Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Being Oblivious

There are so many things I could say about this picture.

For a few weeks now, I've been bottle feeding a little orphan calf. His name is Damit. I have bottle fed many an orphan in my life and he is, by far, the most irritating but also the most hilarious and fun. He doesn't seem to mind the fact that he gets on everybody's nerves. Even the goats have taken to sleeping right outside the pen, while Damit has run of the whole thing. When the weather dipped down in the teens, they were all forced to bunk together. The goats didn't like it. Damit did.

Until this morning, Damit would stay behind as the goats headed out to graze. He decided to go along today and I really don't think I could have been more amused by the whole thing. He scampers and kicks almost like a baby goat would. This causes the goats to dart away from him and act as if they are far superior beings. They turn up their noses and prance off. In my head they have british accents and say things like, "how rude" and "well, I never". Poor Damit doesn't even know he is being snubbed, he just follows along enthusiastically. Being oblivious has it's good points. When you're oblivious, you can be in the middle of the ugliest of situations and wear a smile. Ignorance is bliss, yes indeed.

You can also see the third species in the herd, the cat. There are two of these calico girls and, most of the time, they hang with the goats. For whatever reason, they've been accepted into the herd and are tolerated well by those silly old goats.

The dynamic between multiple species in a group is not only amusing, but inspiring. If the beasts of the field can live together in harmony, even when they don't like each other amazes me that well-educated, civilized human beings are still fighting with each other over silly things like the color of our skin. I hear the voice of Rodney King in my head at times, "can we all just get along?" It's such a simple question with such a simple, yet complex answer. Let's all be nice, shall we? Let's think of the needs of others before we consider our own selves. Why don't we all become a little more oblivious and childlike and quit trying to always be RIGHT. Can't we stop and help a neighbor, give somebody a ride, say a prayer for an enemy. I used to call myself "color blind" when it came to racism. People are people and we are all God's children. But then I decided that I didn't want to be color blind, I want to be "color BLESSED". I'm thankful that God made a variety of people. We are all so diverse and there is a reason for that. Thank goodness we aren't all red-headed, freckled faced farmers.

I read something in my new study bible. It was a list of the people that Jesus touched, talked to or interacted with...and here it is.

A despised tax collector
An insane hermit
The Roman governor
A young boy
A prominent religious leader
A homemaker
An expert in the law
A criminal
A synagogue ruler
A king
A poor widow
A Roman centurion
A group of children
A prophet
An adulterous woman
The Jewish High council
A sick woman
A rich man
A blind beggar
Jewish political leaders
A group of women
The high priest
An outcast with leprosy
A royal official
A young girl
A traitor
A helpless and paralyzed man
An angry mob of soldiers and police
A woman from a foreign land
A doubting follower
An enemy who hated him
A Samaritan woman

We are supposed to, as Christians imitate Christ. No person was is off limits to the love of Christ. So, we too, should love without boundaries.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Faith's rescue

I posted this on my Freedom blog but thought I'd post it here too.

I have never been superstitious about the number 13. Its a number. Today, however, I think I'll associate it with good luck, not bad.

We started off the day fairly normal. The kids left for school, Rodney and I had our coffee and breakfast together, the dogs went outside, and we started getting ourselves ready for the day. It was only 14 degrees when we woke up so we were bundling up extra tight before we headed out.

I went out to feed the little orphan calf, who, by the way, I've decided to name Damit. (I know I spelled it wrong but this way it isn't actually cursing). The reason I've named him this is because I was constantly going, "Damit, stop it! Get your head out of my butt, Damit. Damit, that hurt!" and so on.

So, back to my story. I was doing my chores... emptying the huge block of ice from the goat water bucket so that I could fill it with fresh, unfrozen water, giving the bunny feed and water, trying to make Damit eat some sweet feed instead of just milk by shoving it in his mouth, "Here Damit, eat this".

I noticed only Sophie and Charlotte were with me so I started calling Emma. It was only a couple minutes and she came bounding through the yard. It occurred to me that Faith was not with her but this isn't too unusual, it generally takes her a few more minutes to get home from wherever the heck they go, so I just kept right on about my business.

Since I was already bundled up, I decided to make the most of the morning and take my camera out to shoot some pictures. This is when the plot thickens.

I was going to go out in the woods. My mind had been made up that I wanted to hike through the trees before all the snow was gone. But, a little voice said, "you'll have to go through the goat pen to get out there and Damit will follow you the whole way and it's not going to be fun. So I made the very conscious choice to walk across the pond dam.

Sophie, Charlotte, Emma and I headed out. They are always so excited to go anywhere, even if it's just to the mailbox.

The pond was frozen over. I thought maybe I'd see some ducks to take pictures of but there were none. I threw some rocks out onto the ice, it makes the coolest sound when it hits and I wanted to see just how thick the ice was. Emma started eyeballing the rocks I was throwing as if she might be contemplating fetching them so I figured I'd better stop or she might just go out there.

We walked a little further, my mind on a million things when I spotted Emma out on the ice. "Emma, come back! Don't go out there!" I started to freak a little because Emma is not one for listening. "Momma has a cookie Emma!"

This is how well she listens.

Then it dawned on me she was headed towards something. I couldn't make it out. At first I thought, "oh no, a duck is frozen to the water or something". So I used the lens on my camera to zoom in and see what it was.

The picture is blurred because as soon as I realized what it was, I went into rescue mode. Faith had fallen through the ice. She was barely above the water could not get a grasp on anything to get herself out.

I don't know if I've ever blogged about my inability to handle emergency situations or not but, I'm telling you right hasn't gotten any better with age. My brain went to another place and my body went with it. I started running, no particular direction, just running. I started to rationalize that I was panicking and trying to calm myself so I could think of what to do.

Call Rodney, Call Rodney. It took me what seemed like an eternity to figure out how to even make a call but I finally got him on the phone. "Faith, gasp gasp, is in the pond!!" He said, "I'm coming!"

He was just down the road in the tractor so I knew he would be there quickly. Then I thought, "Call 911, Call 911". I really had no idea at this point how we were going to get her out. The 911 operator took my frantic call and said somebody was on their way.

Then it dawned on me, finally, "we need the boat, we need the boat!"

I called Mom and Dad and took a few years off of their lives. My voice in a frenzied pitch, "Faith fell through the ice! We need the boat we need the boat!!"

She was barely hanging on. I kept saying her name, screaming her name, telling her not to give up. At one point I contemplated going in after her but that same little voice that sent me to the pond, said "don't you dare!"

Mom and Dad showed up in the Yukon and Rodney showed up with the boat on the tractor (he handles these things much better than me). He and Dad put the boat in the pond and then Dad pushed Rodney out onto the ice. We had no ore, so Rodney used a piece of metal that he plunged in the ice and dragged himself and the boat to where she was and pulled her out.

Once he had her in the boat, he couldn't pull himself the rest of the way to shore because of the thickness of the ice. By this time the rescue workers had arrived and had a rope that they used to pull to boat to shore.

We wrapped her in my coat, loaded her in the Yukon and brought her home. I called my vet to find out the best way to warm her. They told me to put her in a luke warm bath then get her dry and gradually warm her up. At first it seemed perilous. She was ridged and shivering, unable to even keep her head out of the bath water. I had to make smart decisions to keep her from going into shock (although she might already have been) and get her body temperature back up.

Once I got her somewhat dry, I wrapped her in a towel and blanket and sat and held her closely. We rocked in the rocking chair and I assured her that everything would be fine. She shivered for a very long time but I had learned from searching google that this was actually a good thing. When the shivering quieted a bit, I laid her on the couch with a heating pad. This is when I took her temperature. It was only 93〫. I got a little more aggressive with the warming until she was back up to normal temp.

Once she was warm through and through, I gave her a little something to eat and let her have a nice long nap in front of the fireplace.

I'm gonna start listening a whole lot more closely to that little voice. For some reason it seems for me to want to keep Faith around, that's for sure. I've always said that things happen in threes. This should be number three. I rescued her from being abandoned. I rescued her from the well. Now, I've rescued her from the frozen pond.

Thank you to my husband and my parents that jumped to her aid. And thanks to the rescue workers for their efficiency and speed in getting here... all for the life of a little, blind dog.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy Ending

I have been hesitant to post anything about this, but it has turned out happily, so I'll share. There have been too many sad posts about my doggies. Seems like I ran into a string of bad luck or something when it came to my canine companions.

Faith went missing on New years eve. She and Emma went on one of their little adventures, Faith did not return. For days we've been looking. Last night we were discussing the whole thing and decided she probably wasn't coming back. She looks an awful lot like a coyote from far off (that is what I thought she was the first time I saw her on the road) and we thought maybe somebody may have shot her. I couldn't bear to think of what might have happened. It kept occurring to me that she very well could have fallen into something. Since she can barely see, she is so vulnerable to falling off things or into things.

So, this evening, for some reason (uh...fate!) I decided to go for a little walk. As I was passing by the barn I heard a faint whimper. I stopped and listened and heard it more clearly. My heart about beat right out of my chest and I RAN towards the barn. Emma and I were bounding through that messy old barn looking, stopping, listening and then searching more. Then, a lightbulb came on in my head. "I bet she's in the old well!!" There is a fairly shallow (about 5 feet deep) old rock well behind the barn. It is at ground level and drops off. I ran as fast as I could over to where the hole is and ... there she was. I've never been so happy to see a dog in my life!

I reached down and lifted her out and carried her all the way home. She was practically clinging on to me like a monkey. She was thirsty and hungry but seemed no worse for the wear. Her little tail was wagging as she filled her belly and she went right about her favorite game of cat chasing. I'll have to blog about the game she plays with the kitty.

So, one less thing to be anxious about. Faith is home and home is a good place to be.