There are moments in life when you truly realize how blessed you are. I smile when I think of my oldest daughter, tears almost seeming to brim over as she told me, "We really need you mom." I have not been gone long, a mere five days and what almost seems a whole country away. From the northern reaches of Montana to the southern land of Texas I find myself amidst towering skyscrappers instead of sheltered by the majestic mountains of home. I left behind me my husband and nine children (including my gown daughter) and my four-legged babies who all recognize me as their mama as well. From the kids to the goats, the dogs to the chickens, I bless my daughter's heart for trying to keep it all together during my brief hiatus. I tried to delegate chores and to remember of all the little things I do everyday without thinking. I know things will be fine, my two-legged babies and my four-legged babies will be glad to see me and I will be glad to see them. I missed them, probably just as much as they missed me. I hope that somewhere in my absence we all learn to appreciate each other and the love that holds us together. I thank my daughter, and all my older kiddos for understanding and having patience for those who whined and whimpered (both my human and furbabies) and for comforting the fears, the hurts, and the unknown. Tomorrow I will go home, back to the chaos and enfolded within the embrace of unconditional love.
Slowly she begins to nest, rooting around. In my room I keep gently and carefully placing her back in her prepared whelping area. She looks at me wondering why she cannot make her nest under the safety of my bed. She doesn't understand that there in the dark recesses of the shelter of my bed, I cannot watch her and I cannot provide comfort when she wants it. Finally she settles in, her nest a sheltering haven for the miracle to begin. I watch and feel, speaking words of endearment and encouragement. First a bubble, soon a tiny baby will appear. Mama instinctively knows what to do. As mama cleans her baby the baby begins to squirm. I watch closely to make sure mama doesn't chew the cord to close-she does it just right. I quickly help the finishing touches of drying the baby off and a quick weight, markings, and sex all charted. I gently snuggle baby in beside mama. The miracle, the wonder and the excitement never ceases to amaze me. Each baby I know by each little marking-the girl with a small splash of white on her nose, the boy with a white back toe, the tiny one, and the list goes on. I never have to worry about losing a ribbon or trying to remember which one is which. Each furbaby has a place, a memory in my heart, an imprint that will live on in spirit not only for a day or a moment in time, but for eternity. One day I may have to write those memories down to remember-but for now their journey is an inseparable part of my own story.
I am always willing to try new things, especially if it may be for the benefit of my little four-legged furbabies. When our wonderful mom decided to have a litter of 6 tiny babies I knew that she would need some assistance in feeding her brood. I have tube fed and bottle fed puppies but recently I read of the an alternaitve method, "sponge feeding." This "new" method was reported to be less problematic than either tube feeding or the bottle feeding. I decided to give it a try. I watched YouTube videos and bought little makeup wedges, and I was ready to try this superior method of feeding, Needless to say things did not go as smoothly as the videos I watched. Perhaps somehow in the mad mix of puppies blindly searching for a nipple to latch on to, the sponge became nothing more than a nuisance for them to push beyond in their hungry quest. I tried one puppy, two, three, and luck most certainly eluded my rather clumsy grasp. The puppies became more active at the same time I was rapidly becoming more than a little frustrated with my inability to successfully feed my rather hungry little ones. I cut new sponge shapes, doused the sponges with milk and placed the sodden wedges near and sometimes in the puppies mouths. They could smell the tantalizing aroma of their nourishment and their little heads began to search in a frantic effort to find that nipple. I tried in vain to direct their little mouths to the sponge, willing them to latch on to the sticky sponge grasped between my fingers. I relented, admitted defeat and reached for the regular baby bottle that two legged infants latch on to so well. Yep, that did the trick. I am not saying I will not try the sponge feeding method again, perhaps a few more YouTube videos are in order, There is also the chance that I will stick with what works for me and from a distance I will secretly admire those that feed with the sponge and make it seem so easy. It is amazing to watch the tiniest of puppies grasp what would seem to be a rather large nipple until their bellies fill with contentment. It is with this that I must now go to fill that bottle and tend to the babies so that I may get a few hours of precious sleep before I hold them once again.
I would like to welcome you to look and explore my website. I am currently still developing it and hope to have it more complete and up to date soon. Please do not hesitate to look and please contact me if you have any questions. Again welcome to the wonderful world of the Yorkshire Terrier!
I am the proud mother of five children, grandmother to many grandchildren (two of whom live with me) and I have also had the pleasure of helping to raise many other children as well. As an educator I love watching the growth and development of my puppies and dogs and the interactions with children that increase the development of compassion, love, responsibility and learning. I spent my entire life around animals and continue to share that love through my selective breeding of the Yorkshire Terrier.