Five Green Acres Mary Jo + Andrew Borchardt Poynette, WI
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Prenatal Home Visit, ungulate edition

Prenatal Home Visit, ungulate edition
March 17, 2011 Mary Jo

Dear Gloria, Garnet, Sylvia, and Irene –

I hope this letter finds you well in the last days (weeks?) of your respective pregnancies.  I am so pleased to see your ever-expanding bellies and am hopeful that your offspring will be prolific and healthy.  Surely you understand the importance of good prenatal care as our mutual responsibility.  This, I’m afraid, is why I’m writing.  I left our last prenatal home visit a bit concerned about your lackadaisical commitment to nutrition.  Mostly, I’m referring to the tea.

You may not realize that brewing an herbal tea of mineral-rich, uterine tonic herbs for a flock of pregnant ewes is rather unorthodox.  Being first-time mothers, with a first-time midwife, it’s no wonder that you would take this for granted, given no other context for comparison.  But it is.  Comically unorthodox.  I know of no other sheep in the entire world who are privilege to human-grade, organic herbs long-infused in a tea, except maybe for Juliette’s flock.  I’d be lying if I didn’t say that her mention of Red Raspberry leaves as a good uterine tonic gave me the idea.  That and the jars of extra Nourishing Tea I had left over from my own pregnancy, which I certainly won’t need for myself.  You need to understand that no self-respecting farmer that I’ve ever heard of would even consider, let alone admit in public, the act of brewing pregnancy tea for sheep.  But you all knew from the start, from the very moment you were loaded into the back of a minivan, for cripes sake,  that I was no self-respecting traditional farmer, right?

But back to the tea, and my concerns.  Let’s cut to the chase:  I’m a little ticked off that, after carefully brewing this (privileged, expensive, time-consuming) tea for you all and adding it to your water, you flippantly disregarded my hard work and carelessly crapped in the water pail.  Of tea.  How are you to prepare yourself for giving birth if you thumb your nose at and otherwise soil the nutrient-rich supplement I’ve so lovingly made for you?  There’s alfalfa in that tea, you know.  You all LOVE alfalfa.  Did you even try it before you crapped in it?  If I sound a little less professional than a midwife should, it’s because I’m pissed.  That was downright rude, not to mention wasteful.  A shameful waste of human-grade, organic medicinal herbs.

While I’m at it and venting my frustrations, I’d like to recall your attention to last week’s incident with the feed.  I’m referring specifically to the incident where I brought home a pallet full of 3rd Trimester, Prepare for Lambing special feed mix from our local mill.  Why was it, exactly, that you refused to eat it?  I understand that you’re pregnant, with all kinds of strange food impulses and aversions.  I get that, having been pregnant myself not so long ago.  Surely your bodies intuitively know what you need more than I, right?  Without even the slightest complaint, I loaded back up the 350 pounds of refused feed, hauled it back to the mill, apologetically returned it, and returned with the feed that you were accustomed to, the feed which you’d eat non-stop, to your bloated death, if I let you.  The feed which has a curiously higher content of molasses. Pregnant intuition, my ass – you were refusing the newer feed because it had less sugar!   I’m on to you ewes – you’re a bunch of molasses junkies.  And I’m concerned about the state of your prenatal health.  As your midwife, it’s my job to look out for your health as well as that of your unborn lambs.  I urge you to take more responsibility for your prenatal care.

You can start by guzzling the fresh batch of Nourishing Tea I’m preparing for your water pail.  Please refrain from soiling it.


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