Tank the Trail Finder: ‘Kids’ will make anyone a light sleeper

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Tank eyeballs the new lock on the gate as he strategically plans his next escape.

If there is one universal fact that all mothers agree on, it is that once you have children you will NEVER sleep well. Ever. Again.

When Ella was a baby, I would lie awake listening to her breathe, watching her chest rise and fall. Once I did finally succumb to sleep, the slightest sigh would wake me up and a cough was enough to send me out of bed and into a standing position at lightning quick speed.

Once Ella turned six, I finally became convinced that we were “out of the woods” and began to sleep for more than a few hours at a time. For the first time in years, I felt well rested and able to think clearly…then we adopted Tank.

As some of you may already know, Tank was one lucky “kid” who was raised in the house wearing diapers and playing like most human kids do for the first three months.

When bedtime came, he had a soft bed beside ours which was fit for any princess, but he was lonely unless I was touching him.

So most nights I would try to sleep with one arm dangling over the edge of the bed in order to touch him; but to be honest, at least half the time I would end up snuggled next to him on the floor.

When this happened he slept like a baby; me, not so much.

Obviously, there came the day that Tank was finally deemed “old enough” to sleep outside, and I won’t kid you, the transition was tough for both of us. His pen and goat house were positioned right beside our bedroom so that I could sleep with the window open.

That way I would be able to hear him, and talk to him, if he needed comfort.

The first couple nights were rough, but we made it through and eventually Tank adjusted to the idea of sleeping on straw rather than a fuzzy pink princess blanket.

I know it sounds funny, but I still sleep with the bedroom window cracked so that I can hear the goat kids.

Although a goat cough will still send me to my feet, as a whole, we have been sleeping pretty well until early one morning last week.

At around 2 a.m. I was awakened by a noise that sounded like the latch to the goat pen being rattled.

I sprang to my feet, expecting to see something or someone, but nothing was there and both Tank and Kiff were safe inside.

I reassured myself that it was nothing more than a dream and returned to bed.

Then at around 4, I was awakened yet again, only this time it was by the sound of something similar to a Mexican Hat Dance happening on my front porch. I ran to the window to see two overjoyed goats looking in at me!

To be honest, I had a proud mamma moment, because I was sure that someone had played a prank on us by opening the gate in expectations of creating “goat at large” neighborhood mayhem; yet my finely trained goats had come strait home to be let in.

I rewarded them both with praise and a treat and returned them to their pen without any drama.

Now, I can tell you that it would’ve been nice had the story ended here; but alas, this was not the case.

Later on that morning, chat along our street was of the two “kids” who had visited their favorite neighbors, looked in windows, pulled the goat equivalent of a “ring and run,” and even gone so far as to prank our 91-year-old neighbor, Helen Bailey, by uprooting her artificial flowers and hiding them right around the corner of her house.

As I stood looking at my two “good” boys, irritated by having my bubble thoroughly burst by the knowledge that they indeed had not come strait home, but had actually had a two hour “run-a-muck” adventure after someone opened the gate; I watched Kiff give me a guilty look with his big brown goaty eyes.

Like any mother, I couldn’t remain mad and my heart melted. As I walked over to the fence to give him a pet, he effortlessly opened the gate and trotted over proudly to meet me half way.

Needless to say, there is now a lock on the gate which requires thumbs so that I can once again rest easy…I think.

• • •

As always, we love to hear from you and welcome any comments or questions you may have. You can contact us via email at goattrekn@gmail.com or follow our daily adventures by liking our Facebook page Goat Trek’n! Happy trails!

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