Notes from Windward: #62

Miracles Abound

Terri describes an especially moving birth experience

     Miracles abound here at Windward. Some of them are handled without any help from humans, and others give us a chance to participate in a living miracle. Nothing can possibly explain how I feel at this moment. Words are totally inadequate, and yet I will attempt to give you just a taste of what is going on in my heart, my soul, and my mind. Today was just one amazing example of the miracles that can happen here at Windward.

     This morning, March 15th, during the 10:00 am feeding I noticed that Kayla was standing off by herself and not pursuing either Roy or I in search of food and goodies. This was unusual behavior from my girl (Kayla was born two years ago during a time Roy and I were in crisis and needed an anchor to hold on to. Kayla became that anchor, as she was a bottle baby. She became more than a sheep to us. Kayla was our friend and a member of our family.)

lambs every where you look
     Lunchtime we all were chatting and enjoying each other’s company when I just had this feeling that Kayla needed me. I rushed down to her and she appeared to be in the final stages of labor. I watched and encouraged from the sidelines as she lay on her side, lifted her head, and curled her lip in pain. After that she would rest her head on her shoulder and cry this sad bleat of obvious pain. I wanted to just gather her up and take away all her pain, but I couldn’t. I just had to stand and watch encouraging from the sidelines.

     Tara and Roy both joined me in our vigil and when Tara saw a little nose emerging we thought birth was at hand. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case and Kayla would get up and turn circles, lay back down, and push until she just didn’t have much strength left. Worried, we sent Roy to Heather and she told us to just keep watch. Finally after Fern passed by and informed Heather of our situation Heather called me to her place.

     There I learned that the only way to be absolutely sure everything was all right would be to do an actual examination. I freaked. Spending time with a glove and some ky jelly inside a sheep was not my idea of how to spend Saturday afternoon. Since I had done a check with Greta at least I had some idea of what I was in for. I washed up and gloved, and as I was leaving Roy came in to tell us that Kayla had delivered part of the head but was laying down exhausted. Not only did I rush down, but Heather called Joyce so that she could be there as well.

some babies are especially cute
     Getting to Kayla I could see the baby had its head out, but the membrane was still completely covering nose and mouth. I took a towel and removed the mucus from the baby and at first I had some definite signs of breathing, but then suddenly the tongue came out and even as I watched it began to turn from healthy pink to sickly shades moving towards blue.

     With Heather and Joyce to act as coaches in this game of life, I found to courage to begin to help Kayla deliver her baby. She finally became so exhausted that I literally pulled her little baby girl into this world. I held in my hands, a miracle of life that I had been a part of. This beautiful baby girl breathed and I had been fortunate enough to be there for the event.

     Kayla’s delivery hasn’t been the only one that I have been blessed to participate in this spring. Two days earlier Buffy had gone into labor and Heather called to let me know. By the time I got down there she had obvious signs of imminent delivery. She pushed and grunted a few times and delivered the baby’s head. At that point, Buffy stopped, and I would imagine to catch her breath before going on to deliver the rest of her daughter.

     Buffy was occupied with nuzzling the baby and beginning to lick it, but periodically she would look over to be sure that I was still watching. Linda had just arrived that afternoon. What an incredible first day for her at Windward this event made. Linda was able to be a part of the whole process from watching birth to giving the baby shots and hooking the newborn up to her mommy.

Terri shows off Buffy's lamb
while Buffy noses her pocket looking for treats
     Buffy nuzzled the baby to stand and then Buffy came over to me as if asking me to come and see what she had accomplished. In that moment I became a part of Buffy’s life in an entirely new way. Her adorable little daughter looks like her mommy even to the baby buffalo profile that Buffy has.

     Today I participated in a miracle and the other days I observed the miracle of birth. Words are useless and right now I feel on the top of the world, floating in some wonderland separate from the mundane world. Without Windward I would never have been a part of all this and that would have been a terrible loss for me.