I was away earlier in the week so I’m not sure when the foal was born. I pulled back my curtains on Thursday morning to see “mother and child” in the field. It was lovely to see. I’m no farmer or judge of lifestock but I know when something touches my heart.
I’ve approached them a few times since but there’s great caution on their behalf. The foal has made one or two moves in my direction but the mother seems to say “don’t rush – we’ll see how trustworthy he is in time”!! I suppose that’s the mother’s instinct – to protect and shelter and to watch over those initial steps of the new born.
It’s difficult not to draw a comparison here with the current debate – or maybe lack of debate – that’s taking place around the issue of protection of life. I hate to think of people scoring points on one side or another when there’s so much at stake. The truth is, the foal has a right to expect the mother’s watchful eye even in a fairly bare field beside my house. A week ago the foal was in the mother’s womb and the need to be able to trust the mother’s judgement was equally important. What is seen today is possible because of the trust of yesterday.
Life, in all its forms, is so vulnerable and so vital. We do well to serve it, to cherish it and do all in our power to be close to all, with all and supportive of all. There are now, always have been and always will be difficult situations and choices. These need not be journeyed through alone. There’s support for the foal in the field, the calf in the shed, the pup in the kennel, the kitten in the basket and surely for the child in the cradle.
As I look at the foal in the picture, I’m very conscious of the mother by its side. “Cherish them both”.