It’s funny how things can change in an instant, one minute everything seems to be trucking along and the next minute things are upside down. Our week last week was just like any other, sheep were doing good and we only have a couple weeks till the fair..BUT it all changed.
One of Miss B’s lambs was acting a bit funny, so we did our due diligence to get the lamb the appropriate attention she needed and by Thursday it seemed that all was back on track. Never once did this lamb loose it’s appetite or show any signs of anything other than an off day. Thursday morning feeding was normal as well as the check in late afternoon- all four lambs were running and carrying on as normal.
As the Danger Twins and pulled up to the Sheep Spa for the nightly feeding we were only greeted by 3 lambs. I thought it strange, but did not voice my concern to the kids. We got out of the car, kids put their muck boots on and started towards the pen just like every other feeding time. As Mr. B and I got closer we could see that Miss B’s lamb was in the barn and looked like she was resting. The first thing that popped into my head was that the lamb was just getting in from the heat….and then I realized I was so very wrong. But the lamb looked so peaceful, you couldn’t tell that it had passed, so was I wrong? I literally got down and checked closely to make sure I wasn’t wrong. I wanted to be wrong, I prayed in that moment to be wrong…..I knew that my poor daughter would be heartbroken and I had to switch into manage mode-QUICK!!
Before I could get to Miss B, she had come up behind me and saw her lamb….she first thought that the lamb was just sleeping and quickly realized that she was not. The tears flowed like a swollen river in winter..fast and hard. I knew that there was not a thing I could say to make this moment any better. I am a huge believer that we should always feel our feelings and not push them down or ignore them….it’s part of the process of being human.
So many thoughts racing through my head: What to do with this lamb? Who can I call for help? But most importantly, what can I do to help Miss B through this? So I again went into “Mom manage mode”….first things first was to get the kids to get their other three lambs on halters and walk them, hoping this would give a bit of distraction of what was taking place. Next was to remove the lamb from the barn, and this proved to be no easy task.
Who would I call? Who could come help? When all was said and done, the ones who have always been there came out to help. So thanks to YaYa & Grumpy (my oh so fabulous parents) for coming out and helping take care of the situation. Not sure if I could have gotten through that spot without you. I made sure to call the breeder and the sheep leader to let them know what had happened. Danielle Hagel and Diana Stornetta, your support was a blessing! Even as crappy (yes I said crappy) of a situation this was, your support and concern has been nothing short of amazing! I get choked up even now thinking of the love you have shown my kids- THANK YOU!!
As I’m sure you can imagine, it was a long night of no sleep and lots of conversation about why. Why did this happen? Why so close to fair? And then long about 6:00 am when we were going out to feed the next morning, Miss B looks at me and says, ” you know Mom this is what happens when you raise livestock, sometimes you have problems.” Such wise words from my daughter. I know many will not understand and that’s ok. But for those who are raising your food that you put on your table, risk and loss is a very real thing.
The only thing that Miss B requested was that we bury her lamb and I was happy to oblige. so before work, I went back out to the Sheep Spa to meet Miss Nancy, the owner of the ranch, to bury the lamb. But here’s a tip, when you have to do any type of ranch work its good to have the appropriate shoes! In my haste to get out the door, I left my boots on the porch! But I must say I can climb the hills in my wedge heels with the best of them….though it’s not recommended if you like your ankles!! I was not going to let this stop me from fulfilling Miss B’s wish. Nancy and I found the perfect spot where Miss B’s lamb is now resting forever more.
In the days since, the kids and I have discussed the “would’da, should’da, could’da”, but have come to realize that this is just another learning lesson. So they are working just as hard everyday with their lambs to turn the negative into a positive outcome.
We all experience loss in our lives, and at times it seems so unfair especially when you have to watch your child deal with loss. But I have to believe that it’s those experiences that create who we are, and if how the Danger Twins dealt with the last week is any indication, then I am confident that the will be successful at anything they do. They have shown so much character and compassion that I am so proud of them.
I would like to say a special thanks to our friends and family for the phone calls and show of support for Miss B, you are all so fabulous!
Until next time,