Out the bedroom window, I see Rufus, Rich, and Jake standing around the animal trailer. The butcher date for the pigs is tomorrow, which means they’re leaving today. I didn’t see them load the pigs. Are they really going to take them without telling me? Anxiously, I bundle up and walk to the trailer. They’re already loaded and the truck is running. WTF! I stand among men who have already hardened to this. I feel I’ve been excluded because they think I’m an emotional woman who can’t handle it. I choke back fury and tears as I step onto the back of the trailer, scratch each of their heads one more time and thank them for their lives. I’ve built a nest in my heart for these animals, and now I have to pack it with snow.

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