We’re currently building a small barn for our dairy goats. My husband has never built a barn before, but is doing very well using his knowledge of construction to make it happen. And me? I’ve never milked a goat in my life and although I’m enjoying the animals themselves (they’re so sweet!), my confidence isn’t exactly overwhelming.
So, one of my two kinders is due to kid (look at me, I’m using the lingo!) in about a week. I’m hoping for an easy, natural, “hey, baby goats just popped out!” kind of event. In the meantime, I’m gathering supplies, reading as much as I can, and trying to sift through all of the earnest and conflicting advice goat-people are sharing with me.
Sort of reminds me of having my first baby. I read all of the help books and sat, mostly politely, on the receiving end of lots of advice (sometimes veiled in stories of the worst possible outcomes that happened to “someone” that the advisor knew who did not follow the prescripted course of mothering). What I quickly found out was that in the day to day routines and minute by minute decisions it was just me figuring out how to be the Mommy. Thank God (and I do!) for His presence and help!
I learned most of what I now know through just being a mother, and I am still learning. I am learning to mother six children by having six children to mother. I am learning to keep a house by staying home to do it. I am learning to homeschool by assigning mathematics. I am learning to make really great pie crusts by baking lots of pies. Learning by doing. It’s not as safe as having every duck in a row before starting (and why do we think it would be easier if they were?), but the fruit is there. And it is mostly sweet.
So maybe this dairy goat adventure will work out fine. In the meantime, I need to go out and help paint the trim to the barn. Maybe if the surroundings are pretty, figuring out how to milk will be icing on the cake, and I too will be able to call myself a goat-person with advice of her own to give when the time is right. Like mothering, there is much to learn by simply jumping in.