January 5, 2016

2 Min Read
<p>A little heifer named Rhonda.</p>

Rhonda’s mama was no stranger to calving. She was a 2000 model herself—branded 05. She had the misfortune of delivering a stillborn calf last year, and the experience must have taken its toll.

I suppose 05 was not thrilled about another upcoming calving event because when little Rhonda was due to come into this world, 05 was acting fitful.

Thankfully, my vigilant sister, Rachel, was on top of the erratic behavior. She made several attempts to pen 05, but the frantic cow ran right past the feed truck and open gate every time and resolutely resorted to the woods.

Fortunately, Rachel is no stranger to the “woods delivery.” She let 05 settle down on the hardwood hillside. Armed with the knowledge that her roping skills were rusty at best, Rachel knew that her best bet was to pour out pellets on the ground and place a rope loop strategically next to the feed, ready for 05 to step in. This worked by the grace of God, and Rachel was able to tie 05 off to a tree and assist in delivery. She found out that the struggle 05 was experiencing was a backwards calf. Rachel skillfully pulled Rhonda from 05 and positioned her on the ground for 05 to begin the process of motherhood.

One problem arose: 05 wanted no part of Rhonda. She deserted her immediately.

There was little time for cursing and no daylight left for retrieving 05, so Rachel took Rhonda to the barn and heated up some frozen colostrum for her first meal.

Rhonda slept peacefully in the barn that night.

The following morning, Rachel successfully penned 05 and brought her back to Rhonda for another shot at motherhood. Though 05 kicked and protested, little Rhonda ducked and dodged the blows for a chance to nurse.

After a few days, 05 gave in. She began caring for Rhonda as her own. They are now enjoying their life as a pair.

Rachel named the heifer Rhonda after the female fighter Rhonda Rousey. She figured it was appropriate because even though Rhonda suffered a knockout at first, she refused to stop fighting. Now every day we see Rhonda, we feel blessed to have the chance to keep fighting regardless of how big the challenge may seem.

Here’s to another year of not giving up. Happy 2016!

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