Fast forward to last Sunday. Eddie was in the round up to go to the butcher. We considered keeping him as a castrated lamb but that would mean having a vet come over and pay $150 to castrate the guy because we didn't do it when he was young (Alina -- you are not allowed to ask questions-- I'll explain when I likely see you in November). So I said "mike are you sure you can 'process' Eddie'. Mike says ' he looks great- of course'.
So the rams are rounded up Sunday night and Mike is ready to load then into the trailer early Monday AM- 6;45am ish. Our son sees the rams through our bedroom window and sees Mike ready to put them in the trailer. He says- Mommy - isn't that Eddie? Is Eddie going to the butcher? gulp- ahhhhh. Yes son, Eddie is out there and ready to go to the butcher.
Visualize son instantly tearing up and starting to cry. "Can't we keep Eddie?". Oh son, Eddie is just a ram lamb. More tears from son- but Eddie needs to live with us forever- we can't eat Eddie.
Oh gosh son-- if you feel bad you better go tell your father- and quickly.
Son gets himself composed (8 years old) and puts shoes on and goes out to Mike and says "daddy- can we please keep Eddie?"
At this point I'll call it the Pat Conroy father moment. If Mike says no way- Eddie is going to the butcher, our son will grow up and write a book about Mike and how he made Mike kill the ram he bottle fed. I am watching this dialogue take place from my bedroom window. I'm cheering for son and father. Father Mike says-- "no son, he needs to go". Son tears up again against his will. Father Mike says-- son, are you upset? Son gulps and in as loud as a voice as he can musters "yes daddy- I want to keep him, we can't send Eddie to the butcher". Father Mike pauses and the Pat Conroy moment flashes. Ok son, Eddie will stay with us.
Father realized it's the best $150 he'll spend in his life- son is happy because in his own words " oh mommy- I just couldn't know I was eating Eddie. Now that mean rooster Joe I could eat- but Eddie, no way".
Still no vegetarians in our family --- but who knows-- some day.