A bittersweet day

Yesterday was one of those days that you can’t help but think there’s got to be a larger being at work.

Louie has been working her butt off for 6 months raising her pig. She goes to the barn twice a day and spends hours feeding, walking, cleaning, bathing, and caring for her pigs.

Yesterday was the big day. She had her show and everyone was convinced that she was going to walk away with Grand Champion.

Potential buyers were looking at the pig. Commenting on her definition and temperament. Impressed with how well this pig had developed over these past few months. Even her teacher told her, “You have the perfect hog!”

The moment of truth: she steps out into the show pen. Her, the pig, and 27 other pigs and their handlers. As her teacher said, “She showed the fire out of that pig!”

Three fights broke out during show and an aggressive hog came over and started biting Louie’s pig. But she handled it like a pro. Maneuvering her away from the skirmishes and always staying in the line of sight of the judge.

This was the 3rd weight class of pigs. During the first two, comments from the spectators was made like, “What’s that judge doing?”,”Why did he pick the pig? It’s too fat?”

After about 20 minutes of walking Bubbles (her pig) around the judge, he had released all the kids but her. She wasn’t chosen to go on to the second round. He walked up to her and flatly said, “Your pigs is too stiff.”

Louie graciously shook his hand, thanked him for his time and led her pig back to the holding pen. It was there that she broke down and cried.

As a parent, I had to muster the strength to not cry myself.

People walked up to me and said he was wrong. But the decision had been made and we had to accept it.

We finished up our day and came home. Both of us sad and disappointed.

When we got home, Jenny and I took her out for ice cream. It was then that Jenny told me we got the house.

Funny, what should have been the best day of our life turned out to be a day of learning for Louie.

We aren’t always recognized for our hard work. We don’t always get what we feel we deserve. And life isn’t always fair.

Today we go to the auction. If Louie can get a good offer, she’ll sell her pig. If not, her dad will take her back to Louisiana and breed her.

I’m proud of Louie. She gave up her weekends and fee time to raise this pig. And she did one hell of a good job.

She has one more pig to show. That one will be at The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. She’s an awesome kid and an amazing farmer. So no matter what, she’ll do great!


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