She Had No Name and Was Not a Pet
There is a calf bawling in our yard, as my husband drives out of the yard with one of our cows in a stock trailer. A cow without a name and who is not a pet. It was an unfortunate event and now this cow is taking her last ride to pasture. Now a calf is without it's designed caregiver.
Death is part of life, whether you live in New York apartment with a pet you consider your fur baby or whether you live in the middle of nowhere Montana and have cows, with no name and who are not pets, as part of your operation.
This cow did not have a name and she was by no means a pet, but her life meant something. Her life was not only measured by the money with which she was worth. She was also able to raise calves and good looking ones at that! She also played an integral role in moving my family forward in our dream of having a cow/calf operation that helped provide for us. Because of that, I am grateful for her life and sad for her unfortunate last day.
My feelings about her passing, don't compare to the loss I've felt of a cherished horse, who had a name and I'd consider a pet, which may be hypocritical to some. But, I absolutely do recognize and appreciate the significance of her life, the loss it means for her calf and our family, even though she never had a name and was not considered a pet.
I know that I'm preaching the choir here as the majority of The Rural Sisterhood community have animals as part of their operation. I know the majority of you have been in similar situations.
After a loss like this, it is easy to get defensive towards the comments of those who are unfamiliar with what it entails to have animals as part of your operation.
Anymore, It's frequent that you run into situations or even stories on the Internet where we are considered unfeeling, because we brand and place ear tags or uncaring because our cows have no names and are not treated like pets.
So, I think it's even more important to be stalwart and strong in our resolve to move forward in our operations and lifestyle without allowing the emotions and misplaced "defense" of our "poor animals” by those who don't understand to affect our emotions and reactions.
The loss of a cow with no name and who was not a pet, when repeated over and over across time, can cause a person to become hardened, but so can seeing and experiencing the heat of disdain that some people have for us and our way of life.
Today I make a choice to feel something every time a cow with no name and who is not a pet leaves on its final ride to the pasture.
I purpose to stay soft but steadfast in my defense of our lifestyle and operations, while also remaining understanding in the face of somebody who doesn't understand and who has never experienced our way of life.
I am determined to allow emotions that will show my true feelings about our operation and the loss of a cow with no name and who is not a pet, to radiate through the responses that I give when someone posts an uncalled for comment in social media.
Now I challenge you to do the same! Do you accept this challenge? Can you stay soft and understanding while steadfast and determined?