Many of us had pets during our childhood. But how many had a pet pig? Don’t laugh, pigs are extremely intelligent. Have you seen the movie Babe? My nursing aspirations began with this little pet pig. I can’t forget that sweet face and disposition. Here is an excerpt from In Search of Pink Flamingos, Part I, Chapter, Teen Angst:
“The true test of my nursing instincts and the building of my skills began the day Dad asked me to be the nurse and caretaker to a newborn runt from a big litter. This little pig, much smaller and underweight than her aggressive siblings, would never have survived the competition to nurse at the teat. In the past, Dad terminated any small weakling, especially from a large litter. That time, Dad told me to raise her by hand—a great honor and challenge for an eight-year-old.“
“I called her Daisy. A pure white Yorkshire with a little pink nose, big pink ears, dark eyes, and a curly-q tail became the cutest pig on the farm—maybe because she was mine.
…..When Daisy became too big for the porch she slept outside under the granary; she never seemed to mind being separated from the others, she had free rein of the farmyard. In the mornings I’d head outside to call her. ‘Daisy, Daisy, where are you?’ Down the hill she came, half asleep and ran into my arms. I hugged and may have even kissed her—she was that special. Daisy nuzzled me like a dog while I bathed her with the hose. She followed me everywhere while I played and worked in the farmyard all summer. We were bonded like family.”
My mom, a transplant from Florida, never loved the farm as Dad and I had. No one ever found her in the farmyard slopping the pigs with us. She thought the pigpen smell was disgusting. But after she passed away my sister-in-law, Joan, boxed up some of her memorabilia and I found this:
a ceramic sow with a litter of pigs and a runt that Mom had chosen, painted and fired many years after leaving the farm. Had she remembered my special bond with Daisy? Did she have a hidden love or fondness for our farm life? Maybe it is not uncommon to vacillate between loving something and disliking it. I have only a glimmer understanding of what my mom was feeling during and after her days on the farm. And now that she is gone, I will never know.
More blogs containing inside stories about my book coming soon.
You may order my memoir directly from my website by clicking the BOOK link above. You will receive an autographed copy if you order it from Village Books. Check out previous blogs on this website containing photos and companion stories about In Search of Pink Flamingos.