The one that stuck the most, was appreciate every moment. Listening to a much too long slew of losses in the animal world that had been endured, my mind instantly reeled back just 20 minutes, to the brief time I spent at the barn before heading to meet them. It wasn't the moment at the barn that stuck. It was the 10 second kiss I placed on the tip of my Moon'er's white blaze, just for a second inhaling his horse smell and that soft 'whoof' of his. How many of those moments do we get? We can never know until they've all passed us by.
The next thought was heart-horses. I'm a true believer in never parting with your heart horse. That it doesn't matter if your horse can't jump, if he's your heart horse. It doesn't matter that he's an ugly color or one leg is too long. Maybe he's "old" or "slow" or something else. It doesn't matter when they're your heart horse. Only their heart matters.
But what if the horse you have, while wonderful and special and talented, isn't your heart horse?
I certainly don't believe that we should marry those we do not love. Those we don't fall in love with every time we see their face (okay, almost every time!). That we tolerate their inability to put the toilet seat down or the fact that they have that weird left toe that curls upward (you know it's kinda cute). You have to learn what qualities the man/woman/creature of your life possesses. You have to date a lot of creatures, discover who you are, try a few out and finally, someday, settle down (in whatever fashion that means to you). But if the way he gulps his milk makes you cringe, or he refuses to do his own laundry, it's okay to move on. Oh, you might not wish him misery or saddness and probably even hope he finds some girl that's just right for him. But for you, you've gotta let him go and find the one that's right for you.
Ditto on the horses. I lucked out. I never loved every horse I rode; some I didn't even like. And many, had things been different, I may have bought and learned only afterward that things wouldn't work out between us. In those times, I had managed to only ever lease, allowing me to squeek by without ever having to take on the responsibility of having to part with a horse, though I'm sure someday I won't be so lucky. I still often think back to many of those "ex's" and hope they're doing well. You just can't continue to date.
The realization I was stunned the most with? People read.
I've 37 followers, all whom are awesome. Many I follow myself and I always take the time to see who the newest follower is, and check out their blog in return.
But I often forget that there's many hidden in the reeds, reading and watching and staying silent. They never comment, they don't have a profile, but they're there. Reading.
I will admit, it makes your heart skip a beat when you ACTUALLY think about it. When someone quotes something you said, or mentions your writing. "Holy crapper, I said that aloud. Okay, worse, I WROTE THAT DOWN!".
And some unknown number of people just read it. And they may even know me. And they may know who or what or when I'm talking about. Panic = what did I write???!
Breathe. Let it slip away.
I'm not a talker. Never have been and despite best efforts, suspect I never will be. Everything I say audibly, I've said 10 or 12 times in my head first, just to make sure if doesn't sound stupid, insulting or senseless. But everything I type...
I just type.
I'm biased. No doubt. If you haven't noticed, I'm ALWAYS on my own side. I'm blinded. By my obsessive love for my horse, who shall do no wrong. I'm innaccurate. Heck, I called my 12 year old horse 13 for the first 20 or so posts. I'm honest. But only if you come stand where I'm standing and put on my shoes.
My experience has taught me that you won't always say the right thing. And in the same way, you won't always type the right thing. THIS adventure, while deeply personal, is also deeply exposing. Is that a bad thing? It shouldn't be.
The people who read and know, they might not always agree. But you don't come here looking to be told the world is gum-drops and my little ponies. You come here expecting a biased, opinionated, silly, wordy, lengthy, rambling schpeal about some porky little quarter horse and his obsessive owner. If I said the wrong thing, you'd stop reading. Or you'd start your own blog and be certain to post about how my horse is rounder then a round bale and I have such ADD that I never work on the same thing two days in a row. Oh, and I'm too cheap to buy white breeches and spent 8 months working up towards cantering my horse. Did I mention he's a tubby QH doing dressage at 13?
And then I smile.
I don't always say the right things. I don't always type the right things. But I type. And I feel better. And I move on. And moving on is the most wonderful feeling. Sometimes it takes a lot of poorly written lines or rambling posts to figure something out. You don't get it right the first try. So please don't come here expecting it to be right. Expect it to be me. Perfectly imperfect.
And that's alright. Read on. I'll post about you next ; )
Did I come away with anything else from the evening? Only that it's worth doing again. Talk horses with horse people sometime. Tell me there isn't anything more fabulous, except maybe riding horses with horse people ; ) And the pizza was pretty darn good too ; ) Thanks ladies, I know you're lurking anyway!
Now what about my pre-dinner? I confess, I went to visit Moon. I can't help myself.
I checked on his new lycra onesie, and am relatively pleased. I suspect his "rub" is in fact an irritated bite. Even though the onesie had slipped down beyond it, his blanket hadn't touched it at all. It was drying and healing nicely, and I could only shake my head. Okay, I probably didn't need to worry as much as I had. Probably. But remember the part earlier about obssessed with my horse? Keep that firmly planted in your mind. At least I didn't call the vet (or he didn't answer...)...
I lead him in thinking about Sunday. When the farrier comes and I can't make it. And H is going to come down to the barn to bring him in and hold him for her. : O Yes. Someone else is going to hold my horse. Stop the presses. Hold the phones.
Okay, it's H. She's going to be feeding him and seeing him and checking up on him in the summer. No biggie. Except, like I imagine parents feel on their child's first day of kindergarten (minus the fact that no one can blame my genes or poor mating decision), I worry about how he'll behave and what she'll think of him.
Silly? Sure. But I think we've already touched on my bouts of silly.
I wanted to see what I thought he'd be like for her. Um, well he tends to walk more behind you then beside you. When you go to close the barn door, he kinda sticks his head in the garbage bin. Oh, and he likes to chase the cats...
Guess what? I can't tell you what he'll be like. I can only hope that his training and personality collide and he's an honest, sweet and patient fellow for her. I mean, I picked him, so why wouldn't he be ; )
I moved on to our new surcingle. Second last holes. HE IS FAT. Love him to death, but he's put back on all that weight he's lost. The winter was too warm. Embarrassing.
Out in the ring, we tried some driving. Lessons learned:
1. Standing behind your horse as he walks along gives you a new perspective. Surprise, he looks 10 months pregnant, and his belly swishes side-to-side in the most unbecoming way known to man or beast. Weep softly.
2. Whoa works. Yup, somewhere along the line, he actually picked up that lesson. And that's pretty awesome.
3. "Soft hands" is hard with a bundle of reins in them. Gotta figure that one out.
4. Don't try to film and drive. It winds up looking like both you and your horse are drunk.
Now, turn your computer sideways and enjoy this DD-mandatory film...