Reflections : Life On The Farm
Shadow Wings Farm

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by Darlene on 04/09/11

Last night I was browsing through the site, skimming through the blogs I've written so far.  I noticed a pattern in my blogs that kind of surprised me because as I've said before, the blogs are written 'in the moment' and communicate what's on the heart at the time.

I noticed that alot of times (not always) I tend to write when I feel challenged and stressed.  What kind of blog is that? lol  I kept thinking last night to myself, "oh geez, this is not good...I need to write more about happy things!!!" lol.

And then I remembered that I do write about happy things.  The entire site is a glimpse into my life these days...the animals I have, the things I do and the things I've come to love.  I guess the blog area is my own personal space where the footsteps taken in the journey are chronicled.  No wonder I named it "blahblahblah" lolol...

This morning something weighs on my heart and it's a happy thing yet bittersweet too.  I've never been one that was very good at pretending so once again I think I'll share why my heart feels full of emotion this morning, which causes tears to fill my eyes.

The past few days since I moved Lokum up to the house, I've been watching her closely as she nears her time to deliver her puppies.  She's absolutely huge, she's panting alot and I know from experience that giving birth is draining.  We'll often spend time with her, just stroking her head, neck and body gently which seems to have a calming effect on her and helps her to relax.

It's been interesting getting to know Lokum.  My mind is constantly split between remembering all that Char would share about her, compared to all that I've experienced with her myself since she came to live on my farm.  I remember the anticipation we all felt as Lokum would get close to delivering a litter...excitement would fill our hearts because this little girl has consistantly produced some of the most amazing Kangal litters.

I've been observing Lokum for months and she is very unique.  She's quiet, unassuming and quite content to lay on the hillside relaxing all day long.  She's comfortable letting the other dogs patrol the perimeters and yet when there's a valid issue that needs to be addressed, she'll leave her 'sanctuary' and fly across the fields to those front lines doing what Kangals do best.

She's what I would call one of the quiet ones.  Some might miss her at first but when she busts on the scene she's breathtaking and I can't tell you the times I have stopped what I've been doing just to watch her...that's no lie.

I often think about all she has accomplished over the years with her litters.  She has produced the highest scoring hips that the breed has ever presented.  She has always, always, always thrown puppies that reflect her best qualities and to be quite honest, I can't think of one thing about her that I'd like to change.  She has puppies that have gone on to become Grand Champions in the show circuit all over this world and there are a slew of people who love with all their hearts, the puppies she has shared with them.

In my not so humble opinion, she has added a richness to the Kangal history books.  Her 2 puppies that were adopted by the Indianapolis Zoo are educating countless people about this breed.  Those puppies honor the Kangal Dog but more importantly, they honor her and all that she is.

This is her last litter.  An important chapter in her life is coming to an end and I don't know why but that moves brings tears to my eyes whenever I think about it because you would never guess just by looking at her how profoundly important she has been to this breed in the States.  I love that girl in a way that's different from the others.  I guess that's because she causes me to feel awe and respect for who she is.  Little did anyone realize when she was born in Turkey years ago, how important that little female puppy would become to so many.

So now, she's about to gift many one last time.  As I sit with her, stroking her head, telling her "it's ok...I'm here", I can't help but reflect to the times when Char was at the helm, helping her bring her babies into this world.  I haven't been able to completely absorb the fact that it's now me in this position, and there's a part of me that is feeling very emotional about entering into something so special that used to belong to Char.

Am I making any sense?

It just brings me to tears.  This is the bittersweet part of this whole situation. :(

I guess I just want everyone to know, especially those that are getting a puppy from Lokum's last litter, the incredibly valuable gift you are receiving.  As I write that I already know that the people who have reserved one of these pups, do know...I've talked to them enough and can hear that anticipation and excitment that I had when I waited for one of Lokum's puppies. 

Soon I will be holding newborn baby Kangals...birthed by a female who possesses on the inside all you could ever want in this breed.  Forget the size, forget the coat, forget the white blazes on the chest.  It's the heart of the dog...the essence of who they were meant to be, that is what is important.  It's what captivated my heart years ago, and I know from experience this litter will captivate the hearts of those who will have one of her puppies.

I'm never nervous with a litter, but I'm a little nervous with this one.  This litter is very important to me because it was very important to Char.

And then I remember the words she said to me many times before she passed..."you're going to do just fine Darlene...Ed and I have a peace that our dogs are with you".


Ok.  Let's see what Lokum gifts us with...this one, last time.


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