I am very excited about this weeks edition of GotW. It is not every day that I get to announce a new arrival to the farm. Getting this little man has been so many years in the making, that it makes for an interesting story as well. As a sufferer of depression and anxiety, I find it especially important during these hard times, to personally reflect and examine just how farm some goals and projects have really come. When depression is at it's worst, I think that it is easy to FEEL like you aren't getting anywhere. So when it comes to Romeo here, I am super excited as he is daily proof to me of the progress my farm has made, which is actually helping to inspire me once again. Before I get into all the ruminations of my mind for this weeks blog story, let me introduce this gorgeous boy. When I suddenly lost Jose last year, my breeding program took a major blow, and I knew I needed to begin the search for a new herd sire. As I knew eventually this day would come I already had an idea in my mind for where I would be looking. Although only 12 weeks old now, when he matures he will be the lucky daddy to many future therapy goats. Adding him to my herd is exciting enough, but when I really sit and consider who he is and where he came from, that is where I am blown away by the progress only a few short years and a lot of hard work can make. Looking at him actually brings me pride, as I see his daddy in him, but also his grand daddy, my dear Gigalo who recently passed away. Romeo is like a missing puzzle piece returned home after so many years :) Please give a big welcome to Happy Hens Heritage ROMEO!!!
Although I don't like to look remain forward focused, when telling a story it is inevitable that digging in the past will occur. I have learned to embrace this process as part of how I release the stress and sadness I carry. Combining my stories with those of my animals as an avenue for sharing makes it easier for me somehow.
So, Romeo's story begins in 2014 when I had to make the hard decision to sell over 40 animals that I would rather not have, in order to make financial ends meet after Geordon died. Fortunately for me I was able to sell the majority of my animals to wonderful new homes with families that were homesteading. As I was also mentoring some of these families, it allowed me to stay connected in the hopes of one day having an opportunity to purchase from them. SRM Merak through a roundabout path, ended up on a lovely farm in Harriston, ON where he worked diligently as the Herdsire for Happy Hens Heritage Farms ( http://www.happyhensheritagefarm.ca/ ) for many years. SRM Merak (aka Ralphie) has enjoyed his final breeding season and is now retiring, which makes Romeo his last son. I have always adored Merak and I am so honoured to have his son here with me now. Romeo's mother BNB Honey, also has ties to SRM, as she is the daughter of my dear sweet SRM Cordelia who now lives in Gooderham, ON at Bedrock and Brambles ( https://www.bedrockandbrambles.com/ ). The temperament that I worked hard to achieve in my own herd, beautifully transferred to these new herds. So, my young Romeo is the combination of all of our work, and it fills me with pride to now own this gorgeous young buck. I was blessed to be able to have a quick visit with my dear friend Marina when I picked Romeo up from her farm the other day. It was fun to reminisce about when she started her herd years before, and how I said back then that one day I could be buying from her. I can't explain to you how proud I am to say that day came! PROGRESS!! It seems full circle to me, and it is an amazing feeling. Speaking with Marina and hearing about the success of her farm business, and future farm plans makes my heart smile. I love seeing the growth. <3
Continuing to peer a little into the past, I am so happy to see how far I have come, not only in getting my farm business off the ground, but also just in accomplishing this insane idea I had all those years ago to build this herd in the first place. I remember how inspired I was when I began, and spending time bonding with wee Romeo here over the last few days, brings me inspiration once again. We are now all living in new times with brand new challenges. I have to face the reality that my previous business plan may now no longer fit into the new COVID-19 world in which we all live. That means I get to go back into "dreamer mode". That place I tend to go to in my head where I dream up all kinds of crazy ideas - such as when I came up with the idea to create my herd. Now that I have accomplished that, I am free to dream up WHERE my herd and I can go from here. I am fully aware of the fact that my Goats on the Go! program may be a thing of the past and therefore I need to start dreaming for a future that once again is full of the unknown. I think the key to finding our own happiness is in chasing our own individual dreams and embracing it. Our society unfortunately puts a lot of pressure on us to perform in ways that don't always allow many of us to realize those dreams. Fear, stigma, the pressure and expectations from others, are just a few of the barriers we all face. Perhaps the challenge is in remembering what used to ignite us with inspiration and finding a way to connect to those things again. I know one thing for certain, there have been times in my own life when my depression was so oppressive that I literally needed a fire to ignite it and burn it away. Each time I have found my way out of the darkness of my depression, it has been due to a spark of passion that ignited a fire within me. When I see how my passion can ignite a fire in others, it makes me want to do more. That has become my new focus. I am hoping to plant some seeds of inspiration, in the hopes that the positive energy it creates will cause a ripple that will ignite passion in others as well.
Sky River Meadows will soon reopen it's doors in a limited capacity. These changing times are forcing me to once again get creative. I am in love with my Muskoka community, and have always felt blessed to live here. Everyone is so supportive and has been working hard to help each other out during this difficult time. I realize that I am not the only one who's small local business is suffering and having to make some hard decisions and changes. I have at my disposal an incredible farm with beautiful outdoor spaces in which to host a variety of connective and engaging experiences, as well as a very willing and engaging herd who also loves new challenges and experiences. This means that for the first time I am open to considering ideas for collaboration with other local people. Do you have an idea for an activity or program that we can co-create together with my herd? I would LOVE to hear from you!! I have always loved connecting with fellow dreamers. The entrepreneurial spirit that drives so many of us into pursuing our passions, has an energy all it's own. I would love to combine those energies and efforts to create something even more incredible! I have already begun to plan and dream with a few special local individuals and I can't wait to make some announcements in the coming days about the new offerings coming to the farm. If you've ever toyed around with an idea involving any or all of my goats, now is the time to reach out and tell me about your ideas. I think that when we get together to dream like we once did as children, we can reignite a spark in each other. Perhaps now is the time perfect to talk and dream with our loved ones. Reconnect with the things that once brought you joy, but maybe you've somehow lost, and see if by reconnecting to those things you can also ignite a fire within yourself. If anyone wants to have a chat about reconnecting with those things you've lost, please feel free to hit me up! Let's work together to find whatever will make you shine again! If we put all of the scary parts of our current world aside, what remains is still a beautiful opportunity to create a new way forward. We can make changes and choices now that can change our world for the better. Like this beautiful buckling Romeo, who is a great example of combined efforts, let's see what else we can co-create in this world together. <3
With much love ~ Angee
Happy Victoria Day everyone! On this week's edition of GotW I have chosen a herd member who exemplifies what it means to be resilient. A survivor who continues to defy the odds and seemingly also Death. My dear CC, who has been riding the waves of a compromised immune system for a few years now due to some health issues, continues to fight to live, against all the odds. Just this past week I was once again convinced that it was her time to leave. This has been the dance that CC and I have danced together DAILY for over a year and a half now. Once a high standing member of the SRM herd, CC had a brush with death and dropped straight to the bottom of the pecking order and has remained there ever since. One example of how nature has it's own set of rules and no human interference or meddling can alter those natural laws. As I've been struggling through my own issues during this pandemic, I draw so much daily inspiration from this little fighter. Against all the odds and after enduring some pretty terrible pain through some of it, I know many people who wouldn't have any fight left in them, but yet she continues. No matter how tired I get, no matter how depressed I may be. If CC can keep on fighting, then dammit so can I! Each day is a battle for everyone at the moment. I try to remember I am not alone, and that this too shall pass.
Funny, but sometimes I feel a compulsion to begin these stories with Once Upon a Time... ;) These aren't fairy tales, though some may disagree. I purchased Further C.C. Rider WAAAAY back when I first started my breeding program. She had genetics that I was excited to acquire, but there was also something about her personality that appealed to me. She had this aloof way about her, like a "what the heck are you looking at?" attitude. I liked that lol. With the crazy ideas I had to create my herd, I knew I needed all kinds of personality types, and I really liked CC's style lol. She has challenged me from the very first day she arrived here all those years ago, and she continues even to today. THIS photo --> grabbed only moments ago, is THE CC stink eye. If she fires THIS at you (and she likely will), you better believe she is checking you out lol. Personally I think her grudge with me started on the day I picked her up to bring her home. On that day, she was tattooed and tossed into a trailer for a very long ride to arrive to her new home in the dark. This is not the preferred way to introduce yourself to a new friend, but it is the way mine and CC's relationship began so there is no help for it, but to work towards earning her trust from that point forward. When acquiring livestock, sometimes you have to travel a ways to get what you want. I have worked every single day to earn this ladies respect, and some days I am pretty sure I still don't have it yet LOL! You would think that in 8 years I'd have made some progress.
CC was bred to give me babies in 2013. She delivered two beautiful bucklings, but had a very difficult delivery. This was the first sign that CC had some underlying health issues that were just starting to present themselves. The two bucklings CC gave birth to that year, (SRM Apollo, and SRM Merak) were both sold as breeding bucks to other farms - a real bonus for those owners! Sadly for my breeding program though, as CC has not been in optimal health ever since that year, and therefore unsuitable for breeding in my program, she has been retired and I have lost her genetic line. I continue to work with CC in the hopes she will regain her full health, but until then I continue to dance her game with Death with her. One of the hard parts about farming is that sometimes no matter what you do to plan or prepare, there will always be surprises and setbacks. Often this lifestyle has a very raw edge to it, especially that fine line between life and death. As I have had to bury three beloved animals since November, I am not in a hurry to lose CC as well and fortunately for me she is a superior fighter! It just so happens that after a few years, I have finally found a way to get some of those lost bloodlines of CC's back into my herd! That exciting news will be announced very soon in the coming weeks!
So back to CC and her ongoing health battles. What started as a simple worm load one summer, became an ongoing battle with a skin condition, to a false positive test for CAE (Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis), to a full blown diagnosis of Polio-encephalitis which is normally fatal. CC's poor body has gone through the wringer over the last several years and sometimes it takes everything I have to keep her going. During the last 1.5 years of her life though, I have resigned myself at least half a dozen times that she was on her way out, just to have her bounce back over and over again! Our most recent scare was just over a week ago when one morning CC was suddenly down again, unable to get up. Her body temperature had plummeted again but this time she was severely anaemic all of a sudden too! The anaemia has been a completely new challenge she is throwing at me but once again she is winning the battle! I am very fortunate to have an arsenal of farm medical supplies on hand at all times for just this reason. The biggest health issue for CC at the moment is that she is still so weak and immune compromised, she tends to pick up anything and everything running through the farm. She battles pneumonia a couple times a year as well as her lungs are very prone to lung worm. Both of these issues have taken a huge toll on her physically and yet she continues to fight on. One of the other complications of the polio is that she suffers from permanent partial blindness now, and she is always just a little bit "off balance". As she continues to have ongoing relapses of the polio, CC is carefully monitored daily so her ongoing needs can be attended to. As CC prefers to be left entirely to her own devices unless she CHOOSES to spend time with you, my constant attentions to her health, plus the ongoing needles she receives for treatment, ensure that CC and I will likely always have a warring relationship. That's OK though. I think it is a small price to pay to have her around here. My farm would NOT be the same without CC.
Affection from CC is rare.....kind of like respect from her actually, come to think on it lol. The photo to the right was taken by my Grandson's mother several years ago and it is my ALL TIME favourite photo ever taken of me, as it perfectly captured a moment of PURE BLISS that I will never forget in my lifetime. It was during the summer and CC had recently recovered from a bad bout of pneumonia. I had spent many hours with her over several days, fighting to keep her going. I think this moment was about 4 or 5 days after she was fully recovered and back with the herd. We were all hanging out in the yard with the goats - as is a common activity at my place, when CC walked directly over to me and offered me this beautiful "HUG" that I know in my heart was a thank you from her. It was a turning point in my relationship with CC for sure, but she still doesn't trust me lol. That was only one of many battles we've fought over the years and to date I think I have earned a total of 3 CC hugs. This photo captured the first and best one. Anyone who volunteers or spends time here and gets to know the herd, learns about CC pretty quickly. She is truly one of the most elusive goats in the herd. Unlike Han Solo though, who is hyper sensitive so prefers to not be touched, CC actually enjoys affection! You just have to convince her you won't poke her with a needle at the same time! The poor girl has been poked and prodded so often I can't help but completely understand how she feels and so I completely respect her boundaries and only do what is necessary and with as little stress to her as possible.
As far as animals that inspire me go, CC is high up on the list. Ever since she joined my herd I have enjoyed her authentic personality. She is excellent at setting boundaries and has been an amazing teacher to me very recently again about the importance of setting boundaries. Some people are only interested in what you have to give them, and not offer you anything in return. Those kinds of relationships are very unbalanced and not healthy. I'm a bit slow at times but I am learning to recognize and change these patterns in my own behaviour. CC always seems to help me recognize and find a way to stand up for myself and my own needs as well. Another thing she reminds me of daily is that as I care for her I need to be remembering to care for myself. Self love is still something I am working towards. I admire this little goat so much. Her self assuredness, her absolute ZERO F@CKS GIVEN attitude. I have to admit, that during this pandemic CC's attitude has become a bit of a problem. When I have the herd out hiking lately, it is as if CC knows since we aren't working she can go wherever she chooses. it just so happens that the herd doesn't like to be separated so everyone follows her! It is infuriating and a few times recently she has led me on a wild goat chase when, without warning, the herd takes off in the opposite direction I was headed. Gee thanks CC!! Then I am left running after them! Grrr somedays I tell ya lol. I have been threatening to put a leash on her to keep her in line but as of yet most of my threats remain pretty hollow around here lol. I am just thrilled that somehow CC continues to find the will to keep fighting and pushing through everything life brings her way. I know one day her time will come, but it's not yet! Keep on shining C.C Rider! <3 Much love ~ Angee
In honour of Mother's Day, I wanted to post my blog a day early, so that I could give a shout out to all of the Mother's, the Grandmothers, and the nurturers of the world, and also to our beautiful Great Mother Gaia, that supports all life. During this pandemic our dear planet has been taking a break and some much needed rejuvenating. Even the wildlife have come out of hiding to see where all the humans have gone! I also wish a Happy Mother's Day to the father's who take on the challenge and lovingly play both roles. I have been blessed to have many wonderful women in my life that have filled this role over the years, and perhaps even likely more than most. Each of the Mother's in my life hold a very special place in my heart, and I send out my love to you all today <3 Each one of you has had a part in shaping me into the woman I am today. Some of the lessons that some of you have shared with me have made me stronger and more resilient than ever. I am a better person for the influence you have each had on me. Thank you for giving me life. Thank you for supporting and believing in me. Thank you for challenging me. Thank you for encouraging me when I lost my way. Thank you for the hugs, the kisses, the I love yous, the bedtime stories, the crying shoulders, the listening ears, the words of wisdom, and unwavering support. Your belief in me holds me up, especially so on the days that I don't believe in myself. Thank you all for your loving support <3 My heart and soul are full of love and respect to each of you today. <3
When I first decided to start telling these GotW stories, I knew there would be challenges as some stories are harder to tell than others. In order to keep things as real as possible when I share the interactions I have with my herd, I just keep everything coming from my heart and it becomes so much easier. Perhaps some things I share may make people scoff, or even laugh at me, but I hope that in the balance of everything, the scales tip towards making hearts lighter and smiles bigger with what I share. I have learned that no matter what you do in life, there will always be someone ready to knock you down, so always be true to yourself no matter what. I have not kept it secret that I have been going through some things and struggling lately, but I have not shared why as of yet. There is not a single person on the planet that isn't going through something during this pandemic. I think stress, depression and collective emotional trauma are at an all time high on a global scale. This is MY blog though. I created it as a outlet and my personal space for doing just this. Anyone can create a blog and I welcome others to do so :) If I am to hold true to me and my mission then that means I must be my true, vulnerable and authentic self, so I shall share. I was recently knocked down hard by someone I have loved and trusted as a best friend for a good portion of my life. Some days I am tempted to turn bitter and let it change me, but I won't. My heart was deeply broken by this person that I thought was incapable of such hurt towards me, and I am still shocked to even write it weeks later. My open heart sure is a great big target sometimes. The lockdown, shutting my business doors and the loss of my best friend all happened simultaneously, which to be quite honest, led me into the darkest depression I've been in for years. This time around it is much different though, as I am now in possession of some very powerful tools to help me through the dark days. Feeling the difference as I process through my emotions, I now stand in a place of self love and that makes all the difference in the world. I am actually in awe and proud of how much stronger I am this time around. I KNOW I am a good person and someone else's opinion of me is no concern of mine. I will stay true to me and my heart. I KNOW I was a good friend, and I have no regrets for the wonderful years we shared. I've come to a point in my life where I am no longer tolerant of BS. Perhaps I should have gotten here sooner, but this lesson will not be one I forget. Besides, there is no time like the present to learn from past mistakes and set new and clear boundaries moving forward, and so I shall! :)
OK well enough of that! In order to make this Mother's Day post make sense, I guess I should get on with it eh? One of the Mother's I was addressing above is actually also this weeks GotW. My dear Soleil, whom I very lovingly refer to as "My Mamacita", is literally one of my most dearest herd members. She is who I go to when I am in need of deep comfort. When I sit with her, I feel like I am surrounded by ALL of the Mother's of my heart. Her heart is special, and she has a very unique gift that I am still trying to unlock and explore, which I will explain in greater detail later.
My dear, sweet Soleil was born on July 21, 2014. She was born during the darkest point in my life, a few short months after my husband passed away. I actually have very few memories of the months between when Geordon died and Soleil was born. My memories are also hazy due to the PTSD, but that time in my life was very GREY. That may sound strange to someone who has never lived through a dark depression but to those that have this will resonate. It is like nothing exists, or like your watching your life through a veil or fog. For me at that time there was no light, no laughter, no joy. Just mediocrity. Every single day for months. Other babies were born before Soleil that year, and they were all lovely and amazing, but it wasn't until Soleil was born that I think life came back into my body. Other than when my son was born, I can't recall any creature, up to that point in my life that captivated me so completely. Soleil was given her name because she became the sun that shone through my depression. She brought colour, taste and smell back into my life. This sweet little angel, born from a living miracle (SRM Neveah), was so pure and innocent, as she explored our backyard world. Her joyful jumps and endless playful nature, mixed with her constant need for lap cuddles, slowly but surely brought me back to life again. I mean really...lol Look at that face! When it come to spoiled goats in my herd, this one right here is very close to the top. When my Mamacita calls, I come running!
I should also mention that my son Daniel is also very securely bonded with this little Mamma. Right from birth, we both knew she was special and we immediately began a war over who she loved more. Animals don't know such silliness, and she loves us both of course lol. In the years since, my son and I both agree that Mamacita has a heart that is too big for just the two of us to love. The connections she makes with clients and visitors to our farm continually blow my mind. Not only in this little lady the embodiment of "Grandmother Energy", but she also has a way of looking right through to the heart of your problems and even into your soul. I wasn't kidding when I said that while I sit with her I feel the energy of all of the Mothers and Grandmothers surround me. I have listened to many stories from visitors about how while sitting with Soleil, they felt the presence of their recently deceased, beloved mothers and grandmothers so often now that I can no longer consider it a coincidence. I am always open to whatever comes out of each visitor experience to the farm. In my line of training (FEEL) there is a phrase we all commonly say, and it is so true - "You can't make this shit up". Among my FEEL community, I am as normal as they come - well perhaps not actually, considering the rest spend all their time with horses, while I spend mine mostly with goats, although I work with horses too. As a FEEL Practitioner, I believe that all living creatures have sentience, thoughts, feelings and wisdom to share. From a connected heart space, there is a profound amount of communication that can occur. Some of my goats are as gifted in this mode of communication as the amazing horses that my FEEL community partners work with on a daily basis. Soleil is no exception and I feel that her gifts are far superior to many others in my herd. Aside from the moments of connection with "Mother" energy, Soleil also seems to have a gift for unlocking peoples hearts to allow the free flowing of emotions. For such a teeny tiny little goat, she sure does have the biggest heart! Did I mention that Soleil stands 16" tall and weighs only 60 pounds? So tiny!
I describe Soleil as "everyone's Mama" and I think that is really indicative of the energy she exudes. So loving, caring and nurturing, she is also very quick to scold or chastise you if she feels you deserve it. This is one little goat that I will always defer to, or drop everything for. When I sit in meditation with her, the persona that comes across to me is that of a little old Mexican Grandmother, hence the nickname Mamacita <3 As the maternal genetic line Soleil carries goes right back to the very beginning of my breeding program, it is important that certain lines carry on and therefore the decision was made for Soleil to become a real Mamma! In 2016 she gave birth to SRM Star Trek, a single doe kid. Then in 2017 Soleil shocked me when she gave birth to Sky River Meadows first set of quadruplets! Well that was a jump! Apparently her first year was just practice lol. As you can see from the picture above, this little family is small in size indeed! With the exception of SRM Star Trek, the rest of Soleil's kids actually fall under the category of "dwarf dwarf", dwarfism within a dwarf breed. Bilbo, Raen and even Galadriel and her sister Rosie Cotton to an extent, all have inherited this very tiny stature, which makes them unsuitable for breeding for safety reasons. Fortunately for me and them, I have the perfect job for these teeny tiny goats! <3 ;)
Shortly after giving birth to her quads, Soleil became ill with some odd and ever changing symptoms. After months of testing and multiple biopsies, Soleil was diagnosed with an auto immune disorder. She has been retired from breeding for this reason, and now I can focus on combating her symtoms as they arise. Soleil goes through outbreaks about 6 to 8 times a year. Now that I recognize that it is often an allergic reaction to insect bites that starts the cycle, I try to be extra diligent with her through the different season to ensure she is as protected as possible. Living in Muskoka our livestock have to deal with pests throughout all season. Lice and mites are common in the winter months while mosquitos, black flies and other flying insects during the warmer months. I have a good arsenal of aides on hand at all times to help in this battle. Soleil is in good hands and will be here for many years to come to offer comfort and loving connection to anyone needing some motherly love. Don't worry, Soleil will ask for comfort in return! Nothing is free when it comes love from Mamacita. She has lots of itchy places needing scratched, especially her bum! Soleil also really appreciates having her cheeks scratched while she peers deeply into your soul with her ice blue eyes. One of my favourite things about Soleil is that still to this day she allows me to pick her up and cuddle her in my lap, just like when she was so new and tiny almost 6 years ago. They say the average life expectancy of a female goat is 15-17 years, with some on record living into their 20's! I haven't owned goats long enough to know what the average life expectancy of my herd will be, but I hope that for many years to come I have the constant, steady and loving presence of My Mamacita. With her by my side I am never lonely. Although she can't kiss my physical booboos, she does a damn good job of helping to heal the ones on the inside that are on my heart. <3 Happy Mother's Day!! Blessings, ~ Angee
May the 4th be with you! Can you believe that as I sit here writing, it is snowing outside my window? Brr, glad to be indoors today. For this week's edition of GotW I have chosen a very special little lady of mine. It can be quite a process for me when it comes time to choose who I will write about each week. Currently, part of this process is to also consider the current pandemic, and what sticks out for me. This past week what stood out the most for me is that people are either individually or collectively, are really starting to use their voices. Protesters are gathering. Social media to me seems more toxic than ever. Full of misinformation, fear, anger, conspiracy theories, debates and arguments etc. Not all of the discussions or debates are productive or kind. Locally it seems the big issue is "locals vs cottagers", and whether or not they should have a right to access their cottages, our fragile healthcare, and depleted resources. This week I felt like the energy everywhere was moving in a vortex. So many emotions, and serious problems the world over, and still no end in sight. Everyone is stressed and exhausted, emotions are heightened and everyone longs for some sense of balance or normalcy. We all want it. It will get better. We have to have faith. <3 So my choice for GotW this week was easy when it comes to voice. No one even comes close to the decibel of sound that this little one can emit when she has something to say. All will hear! Where we live it even echoes across the fields. In my heart, and especially in the year that she was born, Star was a very big support and an incredible help to me in finding my "voice" again, while healing and moving through my PTSD symptoms.
Star was born on August 24, 2016. She was born a single kid, which is not common in the Nigerian Dwarf breed. High multiples are the norm, with up to 7 kids born in a single birth recorded. When goat kids are born as singletons, they have a different kind of way or attitude about them. They are more independent and usually more outgoing and confident. Star was born out of one of my very sweetest (and most special to me personally) young goats. She was also the last kid born of the year, meaning for sure she would end up super spoiled as every visitor to the farm always wants to cuddle with the smallest goat. In 2016 I chose Star Trek for my theme, and for weeks tried to find a character name that fit with her personality of who she was. At that point in my life, she like her mother a couple of years before her, was literally the sun that shone through the darkness of my deepest depressive days. Her mother I named Soleil. With no character name to choose I went with Star Trek, as she would be called Star either way. Both of these beautiful souls, guiding lights showing me the way. Star and I had a close bond right from birth. Star by nature is more reserved and shy. She doesn't choose to come forward to connect with people personally very often. She seems very particular, but she does seem to have one specific gift. She helps people to find their voice. She helped me find mine, and I have witnessed her work her magic for others in the same way many times. Star is not subtle. Although she is small and stands only 19" tall, the voice on her sounds like a foghorn on a lighthouse. I am often stunned speechless as she finds new and interesting sounds to shriek out of her adorable little face. When she REALLY wants to be heard, you will see her brace her feet first so she can project her voice with maximum force! She even has a sound she makes when she is sad that is almost like a goaty half grown/ half purr sound. Wouldn't you know it, this super smart little goat seems to even know where my monitor in the barn is and she will holler directly into it when I'm in the house if she wants my attention. Just last week she woke me from a sound sleep by bellowing like a banshee for a boyfriend at 3am. I did not comply lol.
So I chose Star this week because like her, I see people everywhere right now, finding their voices and trying to be heard. When people are uncertain and feel threatened, as we all currently do during this pandemic, out of necessity or perhaps even for the first time, people are speaking up. However, not everyone is choosing to do so kindly or compassionately. This poses a great challenge and definitely can work to heat situations up when emotions are all so high already. As we all work through these difficult days, being mindful of each other is so important. Patience, empathy, kindness and compassion are all in daily need, and I think that we all have to try our best to do our part. I enjoyed a lovely chat with a few volunteers this afternoon about how during these stressful times, even making simple decisions in the grocery store can be more difficult and take longer. As most aisles now go in one direction, it is not uncommon to be stuck in an aisle, waiting on someone to make a decision - or even several someone's! Take a breath. Practice patience. If you do choose to use your voice, please do so with kindness. Not all demands can be met immediately, especially during uncertain times like this.
Practicing patience, especially in social distance situations, will help you to have a positive energy output as well, which is good for your own health and karma. The only thing you can control are your own individual thoughts, decision and actions aferall, so how will you choose to move forward? Something I saw on a sign once really hit me and has stuck with me for years. I am not saying that I am able to follow this principle in all situations, however I do try to bring it forward when I am uncertain if I should speak. The sign said "Before you speak, THINK."
T= is it true?
H= is it helpful?
I= is it inspiring?
N= is it necessary?
K= is it kind?
Pretty basic, and often I find if I bring it to mind and ask the questions, I choose to not speak. Maybe this can help some of you as well, as it does me. Hopefully we will all see an easing of the infection rate as well as the lockdown soon. Until that day comes though we must try to remember we're all in this together. Until then, try to choose love and kindness wherever possible and we will all see better days again soon. ~ Angee <3