Ava surprised us with a late night labor and an early morning kidding. Around midnight Michael and I noticed Ava's contractions begin - very mild and very random. She had a bit of that gooey discharge stuff - but not much. Because we attend every birth, I "slept" on the chair watching the monitor and hearing her gentle groans.
2 am came and I saw Ava begin to push. Pushing is a "sign" that the labor has progressed and baby presentation is close. I shouted for Michael saying, "Babies are on the way." Not. Not even close. Around 3 am - or maybe it was 3:30 am (not sure any more) we took our previous posts - me on the chairs and Michael back to the bed. I wanted my husband to try to get some good sleep - he's done a ton of physical labor - fixing an existing night time pen - and i felt it was a way to love him. He actually has been the one who has gotten up every 3 hours feeding Gigi's boys...letting me sleep.
6 am came and I'm thinking about coffee - and maybe something will be happening soon. I didn't bother to call the GBT (goat birthing team) because it all seemed like a false alarm at this point. Got my coffee - and looked at the clock - and looked at Ava's back side - nothing - just a few grunts and groans. 7 am I decide to start milking Plum and then Molly. Goat's thrive on consistency and schedule and routine.
I barely start milking Molly - around 7:30 or so - and I hear the "sound" - the heart breaking sound of a mama at that transition point. You NEVER leave a goat unattended on a milk stand - and of course I holler for Michael who comes running. I "raced" to the birthing pen - only maybe 6 feet or so away to find Ava - beginning the hard push of the birthing bubble. I can see one tiny front hoof (you always hope to see those front ones) and then the head. Being a first freshener - this was very hard on her - but she was such a trooper. After wiping his head and mouth and nose I placed him in front of her. It's important for the mama to lick and clean and stimulate her kids.
Quicker than I can blink arrived baby number 2 and Gretchen and then Ian - both as surprised as we were that our sweet babies were here. Both babies are doing fine - mama is doing fine and now we are on baby watch tonight for Milly's triplets. We're tired - needless to say. Pictures are on our farm facebook page.
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We just added a special workshop with Joy. It's a lot to do about growing potatoes. Here's the info.