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Be Ready for 'Mayhem' at Any Time

Get caught off-guard once and you readjust your thinking.

Whoever dreamed up the little guy in the black suit that falls off roofs, through roofs, throws rocks into picture windows with a lawnmower and creates all other kinds of "mayhem," all in the name of a commercial for car insurance, ought to get a bonus. Obviously, it works. It's hard to forget Allstate Insurance and the phrase "avoid mayhem like me."

Everybody has some mayhem in their life at one point or another. Sometimes we're prepared, sometimes we're not. But one thing is certain. If mayhem occurs and we're not prepared, the next time we will be. Or else we don't deserve a third chance!

I only have nine bred Southdown ewes and four yearlings. They weren't pregnancy checked, so it was looking like Feb. 1, a casualty of the hot summer, before any would lamb. I had been watching this pen of six closely. I didn't see any udders forming to speak of.

So imagine my surprise on Jan. 10 when I opened the door to throw in their hay, and all I hear is 'baaaah' from a lamb, not a ewe. He's standing there, with six ewes looking at me, and no one stepping up to claim him. Talk about being caught off-guard! And talk about not being prepared!

I soon determined who mom was, a first-timer, set up the lambing pens next door, and shepherded mom and baby to the pen. Then there was a trip to town to get supplies for lambing I should have had on hand.

So, in this case, mayhem was a 10-pound wooly ram lamb. The interesting thing about mayhem, however, is once you stop to think about it and consider it carefully, it could always be worse.

If he wasn't a good-sized single lamb, if it wasn't nearly 40 degrees the night he was born when the door was still open for the ewes, he likely would have been a goner when I found him. That would have been worse than mayhem. I've been there and done that – things can always be worse.

If you don't think so, just look around. Think of things that have caught you off-guard or happened that you didn't expect. Chances are they could always have been worse.

At least I have a little mayhem running around instead of a lamb corpse to bury.

I'm ready for lambing season now. It was a wake-up call. We all need that once in a while. I'll be ready for the next one. I'm sure you'll be ready to, whatever your own personal 'mayhem' might be.

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