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Wednesday, December 12 2012


From time to time, the Merry-Go-Round of Life stops for a moment. It's up to us whether or not we appreciate this chance to catch our breath, or simply trudge on, oblivious to the opportunity.

Other Half is recovering from a hernia surgery. He is now out of commission for the next 6 weeks. All of his responsibilities fall on little ole me. Christmas is bearing down on us. I have to go back to work tomorrow. The car battery is dead. My truck is attached to the gooseneck horse trailer. (pain in the butt to unattach!) The dually is too big to park in my office parking garage. I have to pay bills, cook a turkey, buy a new car battery, install said battery, give Husband his meds, feed animals, not burn turkey, clean house, shop online for Christmas presents, mail goat milk soap orders, make one last batch of soap, and so on and so on . . .  It blurs.

This morning I was up at the crack of dawn. The sun was peaking over the horizon and frost blanketed the pasture.

After giving him his meds, get Other Half safely settled back in bed with Blue Heeler (Florence Nightingale) Each morning we have a 'changing of the guard' as Cowboy and Ranger change places. Ranger rushes inside to a warm bed and Cowboy rushes outside to greet the day (and chase morning commuters down our fence line.)

With responsibilities whispering in my ear, I bundled up and headed to the barn . . .

The voices in my head argue with each other as they jockey for my attention. What needs to be done first? What can be put on the back burner? I hustle through my morning chores, barely noticing the chilled, grateful faces that greet me.

Joe kicks at Lily as she bites him in the back of the leg while he eats. Lily is a bitch. I love her, but she lives to dominate livestock. I evict her from the pasture, and trudge on along with Ice and Briar in tow. There is a fresh canine turd on the frozen ground outside the barn. Hmmm . . . smaller than Briar, about the size of a Border Collie, but it isn't one of my dogs. Perhaps a coyote is visiting. This is the second time I've found a fresh turd just outside the goat fence. Someone is trolling for trouble. Briar puts her nose to the ground and follows it across the pasture. I go back to feeding animals.

The sun is crawling across the frost as Ice and I haul hay. We finish feeding and walk out into the pasture to check the water tank. The tank is full, the goldfish are fine. I see Briar on patrol and call her. She changes her path to head in our direction. As she scoots under the barbed wire fence, she grins and gallops my way.

 She roars past me, and becomes a furry snow monster chasing her tail.

Around and round she spins, her face splits into a giant smile, her eyes gleaming with delight. There are no voices at war with each other in Briar's head. She is living in the moment, and it's a beautiful day to be alive.


I take a moment to watch her. Ice and I stand in the cold and stare as Briar's circles grow wider and wider, and then tighter and tighter as she closes in on her tail. She collapses in a giant white heap. She lays there for a moment with her sides heaving plumes of frosty breath in the cold air.

I wish for my camera. This moment is too precious to waste. Instead I must satisfy myself with the snapshots I take in my head. And as I watched that silly dog, the voices in my head stopped too. Briar pulled me back into the moment, and reminded me to step off the Mad Carousel of Life and appreciate living. 

Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 10:00 am   |  Permalink   |  5 Comments  |  Email
i hear you...the committee in my head always gets noisy this time of year, even when everyone is healthy. Briar is a wise teacher - as Claire is one of my teachers - thank doG for them! Take a deep breath, make a list of it all, and choose some items to skip completely (or minimize - like just clean the living room and guest bathroom, and BUY a cooked turkey and fixings - or delegate to someone else.) Then, remember what you know - that love and life are the most important, so keeping everyone (2 legged and 4 legged) fed, warm, dry, and safe is the main job. Everything else falls into place. thinking of you and OH, wishes for calm days and quick healing.
Posted by clairesmum on 12/12/2012 - 12:58 PM
As a nurse, I love the idea of a furry Florence Nightingale - works for me! tho keeping a towel or some fabric barrier between his incision area and surface of furry nurse will help prevent wound infection, which is the one risk of furry nurses in bed with their patients.
Posted by clairesmum on 12/12/2012 - 12:59 PM
So true!! Nothing like a dog to put life in perspective. If I had a dollar fo everytime my dogs made me laugh,I would be in a seriously higher tax bracket.
Posted by Janet on 12/12/2012 - 01:32 PM
Our canine Florence Nightingale stays on top of the covers and not near the incision.
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 12/12/2012 - 06:07 PM
That Briar is above the price of rubies. Thinking good thoughts for your DH. I hope he heals quickly and uneventfully.
Posted by Lisa Ochoa on 12/12/2012 - 07:38 PM

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