In the heat of the afternoon today my husband is bringing home 6 baby lambs. They are orphans, called bummer lambs, and are very fragile. A few are a week old, but a few are just days old and very weak. I am nervous. Babies are so fragile, and babies away from their mama’s are more so. I remember our baby goats being born. It was on a cold windy sunday. Bree, the mama gave birth to twins. A husky boy and a fragile, wispy girl. We had just driven home from church, hearts still pounding.
As we left a fabulous meeting with Elder Holland, the wind was blowing wildly as we dashed to our car. Breathless and cold, we were slowly leaving the parking lot when out of the corner of my eye I saw an elderly fall flat on her face. It happened so fast and was at the other end of the road between two cars that I wasn’t sure that I saw things right. Obediently my husband didn’t question me and zipped over to where I directed him. Sure enough, there on the road was an older lady face first. The wind must have pushed her over as she was trying to cross the street. Luckily we saw her and we were able to get help to her fast.
As we came up to our house in our suburban, I noticed Bree’s amazing accomplishment and we all squeeled for joy. Then I saw the little doe. It was so tiny and wasn’t moving. The march winds were so cold. Jacketless, I ran to her side and gathered her up in my arms and brought her and her shivering brother inside. Carefully we dried her, laid her on our heated bathroom tiles and tried to get her to drink some milk Zik had just milked out. That tiny little thing was feisty and refused to drink a thing from us. Finally after multiple tries we got some milk in her. For hours we kept her warm, fed her and watched her. Then it occurred to me that unless I did something fast, I would be getting up all night feeding that girl.
It didn’t take long to decide to bring mama in the house. While I fixed the mudroom, the kids herded mama in. The mama happily fed the boy, but the little girl was too weak to compete with her brother. For days we would have to pull the boy away to let the doe eat. After a week of our house smelling like a barn-oh, I mean, after a week of it being a barn (luckily it was so cold outside that there were no flies attracted to our ‘barn’) we moved the family back outside. I was so happy to have weathered my first birth on The Land (besides puppy births).
I am hoping that my experience with the goat will help me with these lambs. I don’t really think I know what I am getting myself into. I am supposed to feed these babies EVERY 2 HOURS!!!! Yikes, let’s hope it all will work out. I am going to start them out in the shed but have a feeling that I may move them inside fast.