Alhamdulillah, we bred Popsicle, our LaMancha cross, with Noodle, a magnificent Alpine from up the hill, and Sundew, one of our little Nubians, with our Nubian buck, but we did not breed Primrose.
Weeellll…we thought we hadn’t bred Primrose. Apparently, Primrose had other ideas, mash’Allaah.
So, to our credit, we did notice that she was getting fatter and fatter. Keep in mind that Primrose, another LaMancha, had lost her girlish figure with her first babies, a couple of years ago. She is, well, sort of wide and barrel-shaped to begin with. That being said, she was definitely wider and more barrel-shaped.
But we didn’t breed her, so she must not be pregnant, right? Right?
A few days ago Nusaybah noticed that Rosie’s udder was filling up with milk. Being the brilliant goat raisers that we are (sigh) we did, finally, admit that she was pregnant. How pregnant, we weren’t sure, but I knew from my experience nursing eight babies (human, of course), that when the milk comes in, the babies can’t be far behind.
We just didn’t realize how NOT far behind they were.
The next morning, January 25th, Mu’aadh and Maryam came in and said that Rosie wouldn’t go on the goat walk with them, and that she was acting a bit odd. Nusaybah went out to feed the goats, and a few minutes later, Mu’aadh and Maryam came dashing in to where I was getting ready to teach class online (a class that was, ultimately, cancelled) and Mu’aadh yelled,
“Primrose is LAYING A BABY!!!”
Well. I sprang into action, grabbing my scarf with one hand and the phone with the other. I called my friend and goat mentor, Alice, and relayed the fact to her. She asked if we’d be alright, and I said, “I HOPE SO, INSH’ALLAAH” in a probably not super calm tone of voice, and dashed out.
Baby number one was attempting to make an appearance with what looked like a large helmet of water on its head.
I called Alice, got her machine, and said something lost to memory, and then looked again. Baby number one was all the way out, and Rosie was licking her off. I called Alice again. We danced happily around, the children all yelling “ALHAMDULILLAH!!” Alice joined in as well, from Texas, I’m sure.
Then she dropped the bomb.
“Primrose has always had two babies, so another one will probably come in a half an hour or so.”
I cancelled class, and we all stood out in the goat shed watching Primrose (who was very calm and quiet and dignified) lick and butt her kid, knocking her down every time she tried to get up on her shaky little legs. A large sack filled with fluid hung from her bottom. I was thankful the children didn’t ask TOO many questions, just the basics.
I stood in front of the fire, warming up my freezing hands.
I sent messages to everyone I could think of, telling them what was going on.
I told jokes and imparted wise advice to my children. Really.
Kristin dropped off her (human!) baby for babysitting and we chatted a bit.
Finally, after about an hour, a little head appeared, in a little sack as well. Rosie was in an odd place, with her bottom up against the shed wall. It looked like the baby couldn’t get out, because of the wall being there. I had my hand on Rosie’s side, talking to her. She was calm except for, of course, when a contraction came and she would try, unsuccessfully, to push her kid out.
After quite awhile of this, with all of the children looking at me in that way that children do when they truly expect that you can and should do something to change whatever is happening for the better, I decided I would try to give Primrose just a little help. I gently put my hands around the kid’s little head and shoulder area, and, when Rosie contracted again, sort of gently pulled and slid the baby away from the shed wall.
Woooooosh. Like that, she was out. Primrose started licking her right away, and within a couple of minutes, the kid was trying to get up.
Again the goat shed rang with “ALHAMDULILLAH” ‘s and great jumping and joyfulness and gratitude commenced.
The first little ones born on Wide Earth, and truly, all praise is due to Allaah alone!
We are thinking of flower names for the doelings. Any suggestions?