Saturday, April 07, 2007

Ann-Margaret is a Mom...And I Missed It!

Well - Ann-Margaret had her baby. And I was 265 miles away for the blessed event.

If you'll recall, Dr. Mary was out about a week ago for a check-up. I was not there and so all information was relayed to me second-hand by Marty. In his words, Dr. Mary said the baby was roughly 4 weeks away. Today, he said that she said the baby was no more than 4 weeks away. Big difference. Oh well. What can you do?

Dr. Mary had also given us some clues about signs that Ann-Margaret was close. It had to do with plugs in the nipples and well - not being there for the demonstration and not knowing what to look for, I guess I missed the signs.

It figures that my first chance to see a goat baby being born and I am in another state.

We drove down to the Beach yesterday to visit my in-laws for Easter and my father in-law's birthday. Typical of our luck, our 2 neighbors who normally check on things while we are gone are also out of town. Marty had called our friend Richie to feed the goats and check on them, but he was also busy. Luckily, Richie's mom Linda called us back and offered to take care of things.

When she got there the first time, Elvis came to the fence but no sign of Ann-Margaret. Linda ran some errands and came back to check a second time. As soon as she started banging on the fence, she heard Ann-Margaret hollering in the barn. That's when she called us.

We were standing in the middle of Old Time Pottery with a cart full of dishes. Slight digression: Old Time Pottery is this giant warehouse full of pottery and silk flowers and linens and vases and kitchenware and baskets and it is all so cheap. I mean - $0.69 for plate cheap. The most expensive thing I think we got was a vase for $5.99. And the stuff is awesome. I don't know how they do it.

So here I am in Old Time Pottery on a total a shopping high - thinking about setting my new orange and turquoise and lime spring table - when Marty's phone rings. It's Linda telling us that she can hear Ann-Margaret, but can't see her. Marty thrusts the phone at me so I tell Linda to go into the pasture and walk to the barn. She does - Ann-Margaret is having her baby. Linda says the baby is half out. Well - we've got no idea how long she's been like this so I shove the phone at Marty and grab my phone to call the vet - which of course, is not a simple process. I have to call the main # - listen for the emergency number. I don't have a pen so I have to call back to get the emergency number again, write it down, dial it, wait for an operator, give her the information, wait for her to page Dr. Severt and wait for him to call me back. Meanwhile, we tell Linda we'll call her back after the doctor calls.

My father-in-law Boyce had the sense to call our other neighbor Tony who was thankfully home - although in the middle of cooking supper. So Tony drops everything and goes over to help Linda. My phone rings with the doctor. Marty's phone rings with Linda and Tony. Linda says something about the baby being out and gasping for air. I panic. I'm breathlessly pacing the aisles, trying to get away from a screaming child nearby, excitedly spilling the story to Dr. Severt - KICKING MYSELF THAT I MISSED IT. I've got Dr. Severt trying to tell me what needs to happen in the next 30 - 60 minutes, I've got Marty shoving his phone at me so Tony can tell me what's going on. I asked Dr. Severt if he could go over and check on everyone but he was birthing a donkey! It was sheer and utter chaos. I mean - it probably lasted no more than 5 minutes but it felt like 20. And seriously, the screaming child in the next aisle didn't help. But phones were flying back and forth, as soon as one piece of information was relayed another came flying back in the opposite direction. Madness.

We were able to communicate in all directions and based on what Tony told me, it sounded like Ann-Margaret and baby were doing just as they should: she was cleaning him/her, the baby was trying to stand and trying to nurse.

There was a bit of hijinks while Tony & Linda & Linda's daughter Mikayla tried to get Elvis in a stall so he wouldn't bother mother and baby but they finally got him in.

The baby is mostly black with a few white swirls. In this day and age of ubiquitous cell phone cameras, no one had one so we don't have pictures yet. No idea if it's a boy or a girl.

Tony then brought some feed and water to Ann-Margaret and she followed hiim right into the stall. He had to carry the baby.

Mother and baby are locked up safe for the night which is where they need to be. The key thing is for them to bond. I can't believe it's April and it's going down below freezing tonight, but there is plenty of straw for them to burrow under and Carole said she has had goats in the dead of winter. Ann-Margaret will take care of her child. It's nature.

If it were up to me, I'd be on the road, speeding out of Myrtle Beach towards home. Then again, what are we going to do tonight?

Tony is going to check on them a little later tonight and Linda said she'd stop by on her way to church in the morning. You can be sure I'll be hustling Marty out of bed early in the a.m. and getting on the road home.

Praying that mother and baby make it through the night. I don't know why, but it somehow seems fitting that tomorrow is Easter - maybe that's a good sign.

Still, I can't believe I missed my goat being born. I guess I'll have to wait until next spring.

And if that ain't country, I'll kiss your...


Anonymous said...

Sarah darling,

You will make a glorious mom. Can't wait to get pictures. Don't feel bad about missing it. You can torture Marty about it for years. You don't know nothin about birthin no goat babies anyway.
Love, xx Your FGM

Anonymous said...

When is the baby shower?!
Congratulations on the newest "family" member. Call us when you do the naming. Miss you!
Love Lauralucy

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! Bruce and I are thrilled for you!

On a side note: Is it too late to claim this "kid" on your taxes?


Katie said...

Oh Sarah, Congratulations! Even though some might think you too young to be a grandmother, I think you'll do a splendid job. Will you be raising the goat Jewish?