Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Road to B'sheret is never easy.....

"But I don't want good and I don't want good enough,
I want can't sleep, can't breathe without your love,
Front porch and one more kiss, it doesn't make sense to anybody else,
Who cares if you're all I think about,
I've searched the world and I know now,
It ain't right if you ain't lost your mind,
Yea I don't want easy, I want crazy,
Are you with me baby? Let's be crazy"

Back to the blog again, trying to find a way to work out the flurry in my head...writing is my great solace. To catch everyone up, the horse I had been to looking at in my last post, is now mine. Vested Vitals, or B'sheret (his new barn name) came home to Woodloch 12 days ago. B'sheret means fate, destiny or meant to be. And I do believe that is what he was, meant to be. Buying him and bringing him home went so easily and I have great new friends in his previous owners. I belong on this journey right now.

But as with any journey that I have been on in my life, meant to be never meant easy or simple. I had to laugh when my vet yesterday was talking about different horse superstitions and pointed out the two whorls on his face (horse version of cowlicks) and that when you have a horse with two of them everything is going to be more of a challenge. Well of course, what else would I have. If it comes easy why bother, right?

Our first week together was pretty straight forward, we had a few lessons, we got to know each other and we were planning for our first show. We'll call that the honeymoon *smile*. Then Friday morning my phone rang way too early, B' had locked up one of his hind legs  (locked stifle) and we needed to call the vet. This became the scariest 12 hour day of my life. Walking in and seeing my new baby dragging his back foot and walking on the top of his hoof and not knowing if everything I had dreamed about was about to fall in on me. I will spare everyone all the technical explanation but if you want to learn more about what went on this article is really great. http://www.equinepi.com/pdfs/stiflearticle.pdf . The only thing that got me through the day intact was the amazing people around me. Our barn crew, my trainer (Etta), Theo (my farrier), the other boarders, and friends near and far. I was blessed to be so far from alone in it. And thanks to two amazing vets the day ended well. B's stifle was put back in place and he walked off like it never happened. He was all better, me not so much. No one call tell whether it will happen again or not and so I am holding my breath.

The best way to lower the odds of a relapse is as much exercise for him as possible, to strengthen the ligaments. So we have spent every day since going on long long walks together. This has been the silver lining in what happened. I have gotten to take him on "field trips" to parts of Woodloch he hasn't seen, through the forest, out to the fields, down different roads and we have gotten to know each other so much better. I love just hanging out with him. He is a smart horse and watching him process new things is a lot of fun. I am learning his fears, his strengths and how we can work together better as a team. We missed our first show, but we are much closer for it.

Yesterday the vet came back and we did the routine stuff we had planned...teeth, sheath (boy parts), shots, chiropractic/acupuncture and shoes. It was a good appointment (I adore his vet, very straightforward, very intelligent but also very disarming and humorous) but there were lots of little things that came up - he has an overbite, he is tight in the neck, he has thin hoof walls, just little things. But I have to admit it set me spinning. I think it was the culmination of the days before it. I just feel overwhelmed and lost.

I have scientifically understood everything that I have heard and learned in the last 5 days, I have a medical background, I can talk the talk, but I don't have a horse background and I am realizing how much that hurts me. Because while I can tell you physiologically what it all means, I cant tell you what (if any of it) matters to my future (and his) and what doesn't. And that plays with my insecurities. I am drowning in my own doubts. Do any of these things change our goals? Do they change our future? Should I have caught them before I bought him? Would I have made a different decision? Did I rush into this? What do I need to do to make sure we have a long long time together?  I don't know what I don't know and that space is where I stop breathing.

I had to take today off from the barn and regroup (thank god I have a trainer who can keep an eye on him and exercise him so I can say I need a break). This is my baby, my horse, and no matter what we are in it together so I need to get myself together and back to moving forward!!!! He deserves no less from me.

In trying to make sense of the last few days for myself my head and more importantly my heart has been thinking a lot about human parents, specifically those who give birth to a child who quickly falls ill and how their lives fall apart in a heart beat. How you look at this great promise and dream that has come into your world and in a breath your future freezes and becomes a gray unknown. Before this week I could not understand that suffocating feeling, but now I get it. And it is a horrible place. You are in the middle of an angst beyond words and are being pummeled with facts and statistics and terminology that overwhelms you, you want to freeze, you want the world to stop until you can make sense of what is happening, but it only spins faster, you have decisions to make, decisions about things you know nothing about. Your heart is paralyzed yet your brain is expected to function in overdrive. You are responsible for choices you are ill equipped to make, but which will determine the future of a being you would trade your life for. All you want is someone to wake you from the nightmare and they can't.

I was lucky, we don't know if B'sheret's issue will return, I don't fully understand if anything from his vet visit will be a concern down the road, but at this moment he is happy, healthy and we move forward together. But I am changed, I am in some ways harder for it, in some ways my heart has grown. I have found a new compassion for a group of people I never shared commonality with. I have a new goal, I would like to find a way to be part of a charity that helps parents with ill newborns, I want to give back some of what was given back to me this week! I don't want what happened this week to be forgotten, I want it to better the world.

B'sheret has already changed where my life will go, and I sure hope it is just the beginning....

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