February 9, 2015

Taking Care of Business: Juice and All

February 9, 2015
It was May 20, 2013.  We weren't living on the farm yet, but our horses were.  Wendy, our mare was going to foal at any hour.  Our first foal!  I was as excited as a child in a candy store (have you seen my daughter in a candy store?).  I knew NOTHING about horses or the care and keeping of a foal.  No matter.  I Googled and You Tube'd to my heart's content, and felt like I could glove up and birth a horse at a moments notice.  I was ready.  Giddy.  Wendy however, did not need me.  She didn't even wait for me.  She foaled in wee hours of the morning all by her very own self.  Forget the bedded loafing shed I thoughtfully prepared.  She foaled smack dab in the middle of a mud puddle (and I thought I looked unsightly after giving birth).  Never mind that.  Wendy birthed a beauty of a horse.  Black and white, fluffy, playful and perfectly perfect.  

Wendy and her beautiful baby, Shelly. 
Me with my very first foal.  Oh how I instantly fell head over hooves in love with her!
No rest for the adoring.  A tornado was coming, so I went from the admiring and proud owner of a foal to a weather preparedness crazy woman.  I forgot to Google and YouTube "what to do when a foal is born and a tornado is on the way".  Naturally, my husband was out of town.  I called on my mother-in-law, who was on her way to a ladies luncheon,  to help me get Wendy and her new baby into the stall.  I hollered at the workers who were working very hard to meet my firm deadline on finishing the house, and instructed them to drop their hammers and take shelter.  They paid me no mind and kept on hammering.  I raced to the school to get my children and back to our temporary home to gather the chickens and the dog.  We all sat in front of the television and watched, then listened, to an F5 tornado rip through and nearly destroy a city just miles north of us.  It was devastating. Once again, the amazing city of Moore  fell to it's knees.  People lost their homes and their loved ones.  Too many perished.   The surviving  population was left heart broken. 

Clouds warn us of what is to come.
While in a state of shock, I knew I had to get back to the farm and check on Wendy and her new fragile baby.  The house was still standing.  The workers were still working (maybe they didn't understand my warnings that I screamed out in broken Spanish).  Yet just five miles away a community fell.  My heart was aching so I busied myself.  I checked the animal food and water, mucked the stall and snapped pictures of our newest pride and joy.  Just as I was about to be lost in  an "all is right with the world" trance, a manly voice said, "Uh,  whatcha gonna do with that placenta?"  The birds quit chirping and the cherubs quite singing.  Excuse me?  Did you just say the P word?  I was most certain he wasn't talking to me.   I turned around and faced one of the workers who had a smirk on his face and a twinkle in his eye.  He knew he had me.  Google, where for art thou?  YouTube, you held back.  Neither of you bothered with what to do with the placenta, the after birth, the yuck and ick.  So, being the obvious damsel in distress, I straightened my posture and asked, "Who me?  I'm not doing a darn thing with the placenta.  What are you going to do with it?"  He laughed and said that he had to go, but that I'd better take care of it or I'd have coyotes to contend with.  Thankfully, he was kind of enough to suggest that I load it in back of my clean and sterile car, drive it to the back of the land, and dump it in the pond.  And with that he left.  He left me there, in distress, in denial, and utterly beside myself at the task at hand.  

Trash bag. Check.  Gloves. Check.  Rear seats down.  Check.  Placenta in bag.  No check.  I'll save you the gore of the messy process of getting a placenta into a trash bag.  I felt like there were invisible cameras surrounding me, and a crowd peeing their pants in sheer laughter.  But, by George, I got it.  I hoisted the contained substance into the back of my car and headed down the dirt road that lead to the unsuspected placenta cemetery.  I got out of the car, grabbed the unmarked bio hazard bag, and inched towards the edge of the pond.  I rolled up my sleeves, cleared my throat and gave it a one, a two, a three and..... PLOP!  The bag flew out of my hands as the placenta  slid out and fell on my boots (all of this in slow motion of course).  Placenta juice flew up and splattered my face.  People, I had placenta juice on my face, in my eyes, up my nose, in my mouth and clogging my pores.  Get the picture?  The disgust?  I threw my hands in the air and asked, "Why, why, why?  Why me?"  Now, if you remember, the bag went flying into the pond so there was no re-do of containing the substance for round two.  But I had my boots on.  And these boots are made for scootin'.  So I scooted the placenta into the pond.  There it fell and splashed again.

Later that night I called my husband and as expected he asked, "So, what did you do today?"  I calmly but confidently told him a took care of business, and ended up with a little juice on my face.   

The sky in all its glory as I headed back to the farm.  Oklahoma Strong yesterday, today, and tomorrow.