Monday, April 13, 2009

An evening to remember

The pasture at sunset

It was a busy spring day, a mix of rain and snow and hail and wind and sun, of blue skies and black clouds and swirls of smoke and mist. The trees are finally greening up, and the pasture is showing fresh growth.

It was a day full of farm work and school work and organizing and cleaning. Ellen came early to help with the follow-up deworming of the pigs and to help me restore the old barn door which had been replaced with a heavy blanket when winter snow made it impossible to open. A tasty brunch out with Ellen, a flurry of emails to respond to, a quick run to the stores for catfood, cleaning the barn and the yards, and then getting my stuff together for another trip to the new house - this time for four nights, with all four dogs.

Janice from Hearts on Noses had kindly offered to stay at my house to mind the fort while I am gone, while her mom stayed at her place minding her fort. At the same time, things were a bit up in the air as she was scrambling to get everything organized to move the piggies to the sanctuary as soon as possible, and there was a possibility it would happen this very Tuesday morning. But with the shed delivery delayed until Wednesday, fencing to be secured and transport to be arranged, the move will likely be another week or more. And so we are back to the original plan.

Still, I know my days with the piggies are numbered, especially with my absence all this week, and so tonight I spent a little extra time with them as they prepared for bed.

Scotch has always loved to be sung to. During his first weeks here, when he and Soda were scared and unsure of themselves (though obviously glad to be free of the terrible circumstances from which they were seized), I often just sat in the stall with them at night, singing and humming and letting them get used to my scent and sound. I mostly sang them the same songs I had sung to my daughter when she was a babe - lullabies, children's songs, old camping favourites. "You are my sunshine" was my daughter's favourite when she was a toddler, and it soon became Scotch's favourite. Whenever I sang it, he would softly "oof oof" and lay his head on or near my lap, and roll over on his side to let me stroke his belly.

From time to time, I still de-stress from a busy or upsetting day by sitting with Scotch and singing to him. And tonight, knowing that few opportunities remain for such tender moments, I curled up in the straw beside him, my head on his back, and sang to him once more. He oofed and hummed along with me, and soon I felt another warm piggy body stretching out alongside my back -- Whisper had come to join us. And then I felt a nudge at my hand....

Piggy nuzzles

Me too, Foster Mama!

And me!

Piggies preparing for bed.

And then we were joined by another, and another, and another.....until all the piggies were nestled in straw and blankets - some touching me, all touching each other. And there we stayed for the better part of an hour.

For a few moments in time, I was just one of the herd.

Thank you, Scotch and family, for the precious gift of your unconditional love and acceptance. It was an evening to remember.



Black Jack's Carol said...

Heartbreaking beautiful post, Jean!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful post, it is going to be a tough time for all of you and your special friends, four legged and two legged.


Anonymous said...

How very sweet. I can see why you will miss them.