No Rain, No Rainbow

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Today was one of those days.  Several things didn’t go as planned or expected and we were left feeling a bit out of sorts.  Johnny and I discussed, found a bright side to each one, and moved forward.  We decided to venture off to where our goats were grazing and collect the newest addition and it’s mum, the birth being just a few hours before.  Rugged as they are, the weather has been cold with wintry showers and we wanted to bring them closer to the house.

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Walking to the goats–flat, but not smooth so mind your step.  A bit of rainbow in the far left skyline.

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The goat’s gather to greet us in a picture perfect line-up.

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The baby was not looking good when we arrived.  Weak and listless.  It’s not the first time we’ve seen this happen.  And despite our best efforts we have never managed to nurse an unwell kid back to full recovery.  Almost.  Nearly.  Even had one become so well as to begin frollicking about in the front garden, but it wasn’t lasting.  Sometimes they are born well, other times not.  Bella had a perfectly healthy kid a year ago.

We realized we didn’t even look to see if this kid was male or female.  It didn’t matter.  Johnny dried it off, milked Bella, and fed it.  I wrapped it in my jacket and arms for warmth and began massaging it. Johnny grabbed Bella and we headed back home.  My heart broke as it went limp and died in my arms. I was really feeling sadness for Bella.  She didn’t know yet, and was continuing to follow as I bent down and let her have a scent of her baby.  We laid it for Bella to see.  She licked it and, probably knowing, laid down beside it.  I went in the house straightaway and Johnny took care to tie Bella near her shelter and bury the baby.  Bella will be okay, enjoying fresh cut ivy and an old duck house shelter.

Joy fills most of our time and we choose to focus on the positives– Days like this are few and far between.  The weather is predicted to dramatically improve tomorrow.  And we have an abundant supply of fresh goats milk for the next five months.

Everyone wants happiness.

No one wants pain,

But you can’t have a rainbow

Without a little rain.”

59 Comments

  1. Mama Cormier says:

    My sister lives on a farm where they raise sheep. Many a time, despite their best efforts, the lambs don’t make it. It’s been a very harsh, cold winter this year and many of the lambs were born in mid February (the coldest month). Luckily they had a warmer shelter where they were able to bring the lambs. At least they didn’t have to bring them into their home this time.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Roz Hill says:

    I hope you are getting some sleep Melissa! We woke at 4 a.m and decided to have a cuppa. Phil is not well. A nasty chest cold. I read to him your beautiful post. So sad. The rugged coastal walk, greeting your goats, finding the dying kid, having a supply of goats milk for your amazing young family, is a far cry from the consumer world of the west. It is wonderful that we can glean from it the technology to be able to share these rainbows. Thank you my dear. 🌈💚🌈💚🌈

    Liked by 2 people

    • Roz, Everything you have said here is just beautiful–both comments are very poetic, and uplifting. A very restless night for me, broken sleep. I too have a wee bit of chest congestion, though poor Phil sounds quite a bit worse off. As so often happens, the morning brings new and fresh perspectives. Thankfully we have received the predicted calm, warm, and sunny day promised and it will be a nice day for the garden. I hope the same over in the UK and that Phil is feeling better soon also. Hugs to you both, Melissa Xx

      Like

  3. susurrus says:

    So sorry that Bella’s kid didn’t make it.

    It’s easy to be cheerful when things go well. When they don’t, your instinct to look for the rainbow is one of the best riches any family can have. Proud of you!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I was thinking it was the mother in me feeling all sensitive, but I suppose any parent or animal lover can relate to such sadness. I did have a baby chick die before my eyes, but I never had anything die in my arms like that, infant sized.
      Unfortunately I could find no one to credit for the poem.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Greg says:

        I’ve felt the life slip away from a couple of creatures in my arms, including my beloved Morkie (I wrote a post or two about him). And also two people: my ill grandfather and a man that I was giving CPR to many years ago; he’d had a heart attack working in his yard and I saw it. It’s a profound and, for me, like altering event, be it animal or human.

        Liked by 1 person

        • There is nothing that compares to it. Something that stays with you forever. My children have experienced it with chickens already, but it certainly was not an experience I had until recently, actually with them and the chicks last year was the first for me.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Greg says:

            Wouldn’t it be nice if we never had to worry about going through that? Thank God for the hope we have of “that day” sometime out yonder.

            Liked by 1 person

    • I thought of you and Cher and another friend who wrote about losing her pet chicken. I hadn’t formed an attachment to this little fella (Johnny has informed me it was a male) so my heartache is already on the mend. I hope you have found consolation for you loss and we really appreciate you taking the time to comment here. Big hugs Xx

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Such a touching account of your day. I’m always struck how at the birth of anything how close we are to death, so often life hangs in the balance. I grew up on a dairy farm but we (myself, brother and 2 sisters) used to have the neighbouring sheep farmer’s sickly little lambs to look after and as a child I remember time after time coming downstairs in the morning to find another dead lamb, until one of them survived and the sheep farmer said we could keep it – we called him Cheyenne Bodie (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yA6T3SpTIsE we loved cowboy films on TV) and he lived with us for years as a pet, coming on walks with us on a rope and playing football with us on the lawn! He was tethered to a garden roller and kept the grass down, becoming one of the strongest sheep of all time as it pulled to roller along.
    Hoping today is brighter and you have many healthy kids arriving!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Such a rugged cutie ❤ That gave me big smiles and I sang out loud :D.
      It was our second kid we lost this spring and I think that added to my disappointment. We are due one more soon. Fingers crossed. If it's a boy, we'll name him Clint Walker in honour of your Cheyenne Bodie, if a girl then Cheyenne would do. 🙂
      We bring one to our yard surrounding the house on occasion to act as our mower. They eat the grass down, and anything else that gets in their way.
      Today is beautiful and I am going to plant flowers in the garden. It is a whole new day and I am feeling wonderful!! Looking forward….
      Thanks for everything Sandra. Xx

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  5. Christina says:

    You live in an amazing place but being close to nature is being close to death as well as life. Enjoy the milk and celebrate the mother who will I’m sure go on to have more kids. Do you make cheese from the milk?

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is very true, yet it somehow still surprises doesn’t it? Probably to not be expecting death is a good thing and means we are focused on the life 🙂 Though, to be honest, as much as I believe in the law of attraction, I went to the field praying, ‘please let this one be okay, please let it be well’, a bad feeling in my gut about it. I don’t believe I attracted it though, more of an instinct that I wish had been wrong. I believe too that Bella will go on to mother many more.
      And, yes I will make cheese from the milk and we will drink plenty of it also. Definitely the rainbow after the rain!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. kim says:

    A sad but beautiful post. A couple of years ago we found the robin’s nest in our shed filled with 5 dead chicks, they all seemed so healthy the day before – almost fledglings. I don’t know if it was a cat or what happened, but nature can be both lovely and heartbreaking at the same time. x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, five of them? Sounds like foul play for sure. That brings back memories of finding baby birds on a couple of occasions on my grandmothers lawn when I was a very young girl. Their nests were in some rather large lilac bushes. Don’t know the type of bird…just remember we weren’t allowed to touch them for some reason, fear of disease perhaps? It was less upsetting then….likely because I didn’t quite understand the value and brevity of life. Xx

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  7. Murtagh's Meadow says:

    It is always so sad when one of the animals we take care of die. Growing up on a farm it is something you become aware of at an early stage, but your lovely post still brought a tear to my eye. Your goats have an amazing field to graze in – I love that rugged Aran landscape. Despite their loss it is clear from your photo that they are happy goats and life must go on. A virtual hug coming your way and for Bella too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind words of understanding. I do believe they have a good life and are for the most part content. It seemed Bella was a bit sad today as at times she was just crying out loudly for no apparent reason, not typical. I imagined thoughts of her remembering she was a mum, where is my baby? She broke her rope and came to the house, passing the garden, thankfully, to come straight to us. They are a pack animal but we will keep her close to home this week. We moved her aside the dog house for company and she has been quiet since. They all get on well with him and are well used to him, some even wrestling with the dog. I must try and video this as it is very fun to watch. Don’t think she is in the mood for that right now though. Ah well, one day at a time, and as you say, life must go on and it will. Thanks for the hugs and do enjoy the weekend (despite the blah forecast). Talk soon. Xx

      Liked by 1 person

    • Isn’t that the truth. Although sometimes it’s hard to find peace and understanding with it, there’s no doubt that Mother Nature knows what’s best. And that makes it easier to accept and keep on keeping on.
      Almost Friday, woo hoo! The weekend has a way of making these kinds of things seem better, offering a bit of distraction. Enjoy! 🙂

      Like

    • Yes, thank you for understanding and that is sort of what I’ve told the children. My time spent city living had it’s own share of sad raw realities, but those were more often created by man, inflicted upon his fellow man and other innocent creatures. The natural consequences that come with the way we choose to live here is more how it’s meant to be. Not always easy, but that’s how it is.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Sad that you lost the little one, but I agree with you, something were wrong with this one.
    I have had sheeps in Denmark and one year they gave birth very early and all of the lambs died in short time and they did have a shelter, but it was too cold and too early for them at the year.
    The year before all the lambs did survive. That is life in god and bad.
    Cheese from goats is very delicious, I have made cheese for years, but not here in Spain, because I don’t know, where to buy good milk either from goats or cows.
    I love this poem with the rainbow and your beautiful photos 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • I do believe that is the case and it would serve no good to wonder if there was something we could have done differently. I have good feelings and belief that the next kid, due in month or so, will be well and healthy.
      The cheese will be wonderful, yes. I have only made chevre but plan to give feta a go this time around. If you were closer I would share some of our raw milk with you Or perhaps I would convince you to barter 10 litres for that beautiful Silver Chakra Necklace you made 😉 I have my eye on it, but very indulgent of me to wear around the farm 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • I find your offer as a good deal for both of us, I just wonder how to get the milk delivered here in Spain 😀
        I know what you mean, I don’t use many jewelry at my walks with Odin either, but when I do something else Melissa.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m so sorry to hear about the baby goat not making it, Melissa. It must have been very emotional for you all.

    I just love your photography and especially love the photo of the goat herd. I guess they eat just about everything, don’t they? Being a Capricorn, I am also a goat, so these creatures are always special to me.

    Fingers crossed that our return to Winter will soon disappear.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Hugh. I was quite happy with the rainbow shot as our camera is not that high quality and distance shots often suffer because of that.
      It is no exaggeration that goats eat most everything. They love the briars and tree bark most, well ours do.
      Wintry here today and predicted more for the weekend. May is often cool and breezy here, frustrating but not surprising really.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Ah what can I say , so nice you were able to make the mother comfy , like the way Roz puts it when she shares how nice it is that we your readers share in your joys and your sadness and glimpses of a magical world on that wonderful Island , love the photos really beautiful place blessings to you and your loved ones Kathy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Kathy. Bella is doing so well now. Moving around our homefarm, rotating from area to area, enjoying mowing our lawns. She is also playing with the chickens, ducks, dog, and children. Enjoying last years kale, celery, and swiss chard recently uprooted. We might not be able to get her back to the distant fields 🙂 ! That was lovely of Roz to say and I always feel that way when visiting her site, her amazing property and photography of it, her gardens. Did you see her recent posting of the google earth image of her land. So cool!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: Rainy Day Ramblings | The Aran Artisan

  12. Pingback: Rainy Day Ramblings | The Aran Artisan

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