(Excerpt from Tales from Heritage Farm)
“Come on, out with it,” urged Frieda. (She was a motherly type.)
Huffing and sputtering out her troubles, Hildy listed all of the things she expected to encounter that day. “I’ll hunt and get pecked by Annie. I will peck and be nipped by Dolly. After scratching a while, I’ll get chased and jabbed at by Little Red. Once I lay my big brown egg, Sophie will pick on me. A hen’s lot in life is a weary one. I’ve been cooped up all my life and nobody likes me,” she wailed.
“I do,” said Frieda.
“Yeah, but you don’t count,” she answered caustically.
“Oh,…I see,” retreated Frieda.
A brief moment of silence passed when Frieda recharged and blurted, “Well, maybe if you can’t change the others, you might try to change yourself … your attitude.”
“Yeah, well, how do you propose I do that?” snapped Hildy.
“I’ve tried a little exercise,” Frieda encouraged. “Whenever I think thoughts that weigh me down like yours do, I ponder some ‘praise thought’.”
“Praise thought? What do you mean?” interrupted Hildy.
“If I find a meaty oat or a tasty seed, I say, ‘Praise the Lord!’ Should I find a patch of weeds or fragrant green blades of grass to eat, I say, ‘Praise the Lord!’ When our rooster calls us each day I think, ‘Praise the Lord that Maximillian had to wake up first while I could catch a couple of more winks.'”
“Oh, now, Frieda, you’ve gone too far. That noisy fellow is such a loud, arrogant sort. Don’t you hear him saying each day, ‘I’m so good for you?'” she clucked with sarcasm that Frieda could not ignore.
Sketch by Wenda Grabau