Dear Farm Journal,
Not unexpectedly, but unfortunately, Poofy walked on last night, succumbing to the cruelties of her former owner. I found myself awakened early by a nudging concern for the sick chicken. I braced myself, walked somberly to the coop, and as expected, found her dead. I find myself surprisingly touched by the loss of this animal who was in my care for less than 24 hours. I know her death was not my fault and I most likely could not have prevented it. However, I still console myself with the thoughts and words that, “we did everything we could”. As Rufus says, sick and dying animals are part of farming life. He is a veteran farmer and certainly has seen many an animal succumb to sickness or injury, even since childhood. He has developed thick skin, and I suppose with time, I will too. However, this morning, I feel a tinge of loss and defeat, and although I know growing a thick skin is part of farming, I think I may always feel compassion for suffering, and that is significant as well.