Lambing Season Lessons

I was having a pleasant Thursday morning on the third day since arriving at Chewonki. Surrounded by six of the new friends I was quarantined with, we conversed about the upcoming day and what it would bring (since the first two days were an adventure, full of exploring Chewonki’s magic).

Just then, Sarah, the Associate Dean, arrived at our cabin and invited all of us to visit the farm for a few minutes since she was on her way there. While I jumped at the opportunity, my friends did not share the same excitement that I had, since they had been to the farm the day before. A lesson I would like to impart with you that I heard from Susan, our Head of School — “Just because you have already done something, doesn’t mean you should excuse yourself from doing it again, because you can have an entirely new experience despite doing the same activity.” So, I accepted Sarah’s offer, where my most memorable experience of my first two weeks awaited me. 

Upon reaching the barn, we were informed that a sheep was in labor. I had never been to a farm before, much less witnessed any animal give birth… I was ecstatic. There were two farmers there overlooking the process, and they told us the steps, what to expect, and that it would take between thirty minutes to an hour. Our little trip was supposed to only take about ten minutes, but this felt like an appropriate reason to extend our outing.

Watching the lamb being born was both a gruesome and beautiful sight. Within ten minutes from entering the world, the little lamb repeatedly stood up and fell back down as it struggled to its feet. Suddenly, a second lamb literally came flying out within seconds, and this one looked just as helpless as the first. At this point, I was running late to my next activity, so I left the barn with two lambs who could barely stand. The next day I came back to the barn, and both lambs were running around in the enclosure full of life.

This is only my second week at Chewonki, and my journey is still in its early stages. Nevertheless, I have immersed myself in a program where I can truly thrive, and I am hopeful for the future. I was once anxious about entering such an unfamiliar environment, but after witnessing something so special, I can now wholeheartedly say I am deeply grateful for my experience thus far. 

LeShaun Warner, Chadwick School, Los Angeles, CA

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