Hindel Kidz 18: Poor Pearl and The Guessing Game | By: Abbey Gray | | Category: Short Story - Biography Bookmark and Share

Hindel Kidz 18: Poor Pearl and The Guessing Game

Hindel Kidz 18

Poor Peal and The Guessing Game


Ruby and Pearl had both been placed with Elmer at the same time. A couple weeks later, Ruby fell back in love again so she wasn‘t expecting a baby yet. They didn’t notice Pearl falling back in love, but Grace still wasn’t sure whether she was going to have a baby or not. Then later on she heard Jack say, “Pearl’s due date is February 20th, 2009“. Grace was thrilled because then she knew for sure.

Even though, Pearl wasn’t showing any signs by the middle of January. At the beginning of February she was starting to get larger and larger. By Valentine’s Day, she was so big she couldn’t even lie down. She had to sleep sitting up. She looked like she had swallowed a watermelon. Jack felt sorry for her.

Sven said, “I still think she is going to have a single.” There wasn’t any way that was going to happen.

“I think she will have twins,” Grace guessed.

“Triplets,” said Jerry and Grace’s daddy.

Shelly down at Rolling Hills thought,” Pearl is going to have twins,” and she went as far to say, “She is going to have two boys.”

 They had sent a picture of Pearl to Shelly and she responded, “Pearl looks enormous.“

Charlotte had taken the photo into work and some people thought Pearl looked like calf instead of a goat.

Grace really didn’t care what or how many babies Pearl had as long as they all were okay. She also wanted to be there when it happened.

An elephant at the Columbus Zoo was supposed to have a baby any time also. Sven said. “We ought to take Pearl down and pass her off as a baby elephant.”

For a while Grace thought Pearl was going to have her babies before her due date, but she still wasn’t showing any signs. Then she was beginning to worry when Pearl went five days past her due date. Grace looked at the gestation chart and Pearl was only on her 152nd day. The gestation for a goat is anywhere between 143 to 152 days. Libby has been born on day 155. They said the closer a goat is to the 143rd   day the better chance the baby has of surviving. So Grace hoped it was a good sign.  Last year Pearl didn’t show any signs until the day right before she had Carolyn.

Grace went up every day at feeding time, no matter how cold and windy it was just in case. Each day Pearl looked a little wider through the back end, but nothing definite. She still ate the pellets and apples also. Joy would sit at the gate and look at her from the other side.

“If I ever have a baby, I hope I am not that big,” Joy thought.

 Pearl was bigger than ever. She was practically round.

Each day Grace hoped Pearl would have her babies even though Jack said he wasn’t going to call unless she had any complications. When she didn’t have them on the 20th, Jack said, “It could be another five days.”

 On the 25th, when she didn’t have them he said, “It could possibly be another week.”

 Then on March 1st he said, “It might be next weekend to another week and a half before Pearl has them. “

Jack didn’t even know. Grace kept thinking Pearl would have them in the next couple of days.

“I wish you would make up your mind,” she said.

 Grace was just hoping Pearl was going to have them before March 12th because Grace’s parents were coming up from Louisiana for a visit. She wanted them to see the baby goats. They had planned on going to Illinois to see Grace’s grandparents and she was supposed to go along. She didn’t want to be in another state when Pearl had her babies.

Grace was hoping this time Jack would name the babies after gemstones. Sven suggested Huey, Dewey and Louie if Pearl had triplets. Grace said, Larry, Moe and Curly. If Pearl had them on the day of a snowstorm, Sven said to name one Snow and the other Storm. The same applied if it rained. Grace also hoped Pearl would have them on a decent day weather wise. They had up and down temperatures all through February. Grace was also considering names like Black Ice and Black Friday.

Bree had said if Pearl had a girl, Jack ought to name it Kylie after her daughter. So Bree could bring Kylie down to see Kylie.  Kylie’s birthday was also February 20th. Grace couldn’t believe that. Sven said he didn’t think she needed to worry. Pearl didn’t have them on 20th anyway

On March 9th when Grace went up to feed, Pearl was in the birthing pen.

“Is she was actually having the babies?“ she asked because Pearl was just sitting there.

Jack said,  “Pearl is Pearl.” Which didn’t answer her question.

 Grace decided to stay a little bit. She noticed Pearl was starting to show more signs than she had before. She was pawing at the ground, getting up and lying back down and acting like she wanted to push. She also made a couple of small sounds.

“Becca, you should come over here and coach Pearl. You went through this less than two months ago,” Grace told her. By 7:30pm nothing had changed so Grace went home with Sven.

In the morning of March 10th, Sven swung by Jack’s before heading in to work. Pearl hadn’t had her babies yet. When Grace walked into the building at feeding time, Pearl was definitely going to have her babies soon and Jack said this was the first time he had heard her cry out.  Grace was trying to decide whether to stay or come home. She knew if she left, she would be kicking herself for not being there when Pearl had them. She had been lucky Pearl was having them at feeding time since Grace was going to be up there anyway. When Grace went in the pen to check Pearl, she saw a little black spot. She touched it and it was solid so she knew the babies would be coming soon.

When Pearl had pushed a little more of it out, Grace had planned on cleaning out the mouth the way she did with Carolyn. Only it didn’t look like the nose was coming out first. She tried to see if she could pull any if it out and a very small and thin leg appeared. Seeing how small and thin the leg was Grace knew something wasn’t right.  She was also able to pull the rest of the baby out real easily. It couldn’t weigh more than one pound and was the size of a newborn puppy.  She didn’t think it looked like it had any hair just skin. The eyes were sunken in and it was clear the first baby was a stillborn. She told Jack and he came out to the building and put it in one of the empty feedbags.

“Since the first one was stillborn it is most likely the others ones will be stillborn as well,” Jack said.

Grace hoped he was wrong. She had always been very hopeful. She hoped at least one of the babies would be okay.

Grace had just assumed if a goat had more than one baby then the second one would come right after the first, but that was not the case. She sat down on one of the corn bags to wait. About ten or fifteen minutes later, she got up and walked back over to the birthing pen and there was a big puddle of slime and a baby goat in the middle. She rolled up her sleeves and tore open the sack, but this baby was just as small and as stillborn as the first. Grace hadn’t even known Pearl had pushed it out, she hadn’t cried. Grace picked this baby up and put it in the feedbag along with the other one. Since there was so much slime, she figured she had been right about Pearl having twins. Except for the fact Pearl was acting like she was still trying to push.

Around another ten or fifteen minutes later, Grace saw another leg appear. She had still been hopeful about the second one, but she wasn’t about the third. She just expected it to be stillborn and it was. She even checked it over carefully making sure it wasn’t alive. The last thing she wanted was to put a live baby goat in the feedbag with its dead brother and sister.  She didn’t even try and check the third one.

She washed her hands off outside and Sven went in to tell Jack. He had also thought Pearl only had twins. All three looked like they were not fully developed and their eyes were sunken in. That told them they were already dead. There was nothing any of them could have done.  Pearl let out a soft little bellow and it almost sounded like she was crying.

““I know life and death are a part of life, but it doesn’t make it any less heartbreaking when babies aren’t okay,” Grace replied. “This makes Carolyn even more special than she already is. I wanted her to have a biological brother or sister instead of just a step-one.”

Sven e-mailed Shelly and told her. She said she was sorry, too. Later on, one of her goats had quads. Grace was so surprised. Pearl had been huge so she could only imagine how big that goat must have been. She had three does and one buck.


Now they lay the baby goats down to sleep.

They pray the Lord their souls to keep.

Since they died before they waked,

They pray the Lord their souls to take.


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