Little Red Rose spent her first night in the barn like a big girl last night. She was tucked in soundly with lots of straw and a cozy little jacket. When I went out to do the barn chores this morning, she greeted me with great eagerness and affection. I think she missed me.
We have removed virtually every trace of her stay in her basement apartment. Twice, I have started to open the door to take a peek down the steps at her, then remembered that she’s no longer there. It’s a little sad.
But not too sad.
She seems to be adjusting to life on the outside pretty well. She’s eating like a greedy pig, but we are watching her stool for scours (diarrhea). My favorite vet says that as long as she is still eating well, she’ll be fine. So, we are still watching her carefully and praying for a healthy calf.
I’ve learned (or been reminded of) a lot in the seven days of Little Red Rose’s life. Here are a few things at the top of the list:
1. If I ever have the opportunity to breed our own cattle, I will do my level best to avoid a winter calving.
2. (More adamantly and with great passion.) If I ever have the opportunity to breed our own cattle, I will do my level best to avoid a winter calving.
3. We all have a lot to learn about something, and the learning sure is a lot more pleasant when the teachers show a little patience and extend a little grace. (This makes me super happy that I have not laughed at or condescended to Farmers Market customers who did not know the difference between a cucumber and a zucchini.)
4. Most people are pretty willing to help a girl (or a calf) out when they can.
5. My kids are pretty amazing.
6. Whelping boxes are not just for dogs. (Who’d a thunk?!)
7. Farmers pretty much have to love what they do (or be one bale short of a trailer-load, if you know what I mean).
8. A good start in life can make all the difference.
9. I really, really, really like calves.
10. God is never too busy to hear my prayers–even when I’m a little too emotionally invested in and overly-attached to a calf I’ve only known for a matter of hours.
11, Giving up is for sissies.