When I took Agnes away from her mother due to neglect, I knew I would create a little lamb who would see me has her mother. Patient, tedious bottle feeding gave way to lambs eating the lawn in the spring. As fall approached and the rams started to get frisky, Agnes moved with Martha from my house down to the adult ewe herd. In the context of a bunch of ewes who mainly view me as Katie-bringer-of-the-holy-grain, Agnes really stands out.
While the other sheep hang back, Agnes eagerly greets me at the edge of the fence. She stands as close to the fence as she dares, waiting for me to come scratch her on the head and the brisket. Being a good sheep-mom, I usually acquiesce to this request. I scratch the tiny patch of short wool on her poll, scratch behind each ear, rub her chin vigorously, and then reach down and scratch her brisket between her front legs. She grunts a little and shakes her head, occasionally bonking me in a friendly way.
Although actual parenthood is a little ways off for me, I feel that I’m experiencing a bit of sheep-parenthood. Agnes seems to want me around. She comes when called and follows me every where I go. If I were to guess, I would say that Agnes would very much want me to relax beside her in the pasture, contentedly chewing cud while watching swallows snap up flying bugs. We’d listen to barred owls together as dusk falls. It doesn’t sound that bad to me…except maybe the cud part.