Monday, November 22, 2010

Just A Horse

From time to time, people tell me, "lighten up, it's just a horse," or, "that's a lot of money for just a horse".

They don't understand the distance traveled, the time spent, or the costs involved for "just a horse." Some of my proudest moments have come about with "just a horse".

Many hours have passed and my only company was "just a horse," but I did not once feel slighted. Some of my saddest moments have been brought about by "just a horse", and in those days of darkness, the gentle touch of "just a horse" gave me comfort and reason to overcome the day.

If you too, think its "just a horse", then you will probably understand phrases like "just a friend", "just a sunrise", or "just a promise".

"Just a horse" brings into my life the very essence of friendship, trust, and pure unbridled joy. "Just a horse" brings out the compassion and patience that make me a better person. Because of "just a horse" I will rise early, take long walks and look longingly into the future.

So for me and folks like me, it's not "just a horse" but an embodiment of all the hopes and dreams of the future, the fond memories of the past, and the pure joy of the moment.

"Just a horse" brings out what's good in me and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day.

I hope that someday they can understand that it's not "just a horse" but the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being "just a woman".


Denali's mom back in... sorry for all my random posts. I haven't told many of my friends that I'm putting Denali down. I need a place to ramble, and why not... I decided to keep it to myself for multiple reasons. I don't want people to give me their opinions. I don't want to be told I'm a horrible person, that I should try this or try that, or people to tell me that it's "just a horse." Denali is not just a horse. She is my life, my love. She keeps my sanity in check. When the whole world is against me, I have her. I will make an announcement after. There will never be another one like her.

She asked me to save her on that hot July day at the auction. I still wish there was a way for me to save her on this cold November evening. I THINK I'm at peace with this decision, but it's still so F@cking hard and feels so unfair. When I got Denali I was battling depression, it was a fierce battle, and at times I felt I was loosing. Denali changed that, without a doubt I can say that she saved me from myself. She gave me a reason to live (in addition to my husband.) When the world was against me, if I had the worst day, I could go to the barn and all the pain would fade away. If I tried calling my friends, and no one would answer, I knew that she'd be waiting for me at the gate.

I came across a website tonight. It has really good resources for someone going through the grieving process. I thought I'd post it here in case anyone who reads this needs support someday.

We dropped Denali off at the vet a little over a week ago. I noticed that I had marked on our calendar for November 27, "Denali comes Home :) :) :)" I crossed it off, and tried to not think of it, but I can't wait for November to be over so that I can tear the November page off the calendar and forget it ever happened. I never imagined that Denali wouldn't come home from the vet. It never crossed my mind.

Enough rambling. I know I have videos of Denali posted on this blog. Instead of rambling I'm going to attempt to go find them...


eventer79 said...

I just saw your posts and I wanted to send you all the condolences I have. I can see that you and Denali both have been wonderful for each other and I believe that is what this journey as a horse owner is supposed to be all about. The heart-wrenching grief that comes with saying goodbye always makes us wonder a bit if it's worth it, but then we know, oh yes, it is. And then we can take all the love and lessons our horses gift us with and pass them on to the next soul in need, whether it be equine or some other species.

All the best,
eventer79 and Solo

Leah Fry said...

I'm sure the waiting is not making this any easier. You aren't a bad person, and anyone who has horses knows what you are going through. Nobody knows the situation better than you do. Do what your heart says is right and rest easy.

Anonymous said...

Pity the people who say "just a horse" - they have never gotten to experience the magic. Sending good wishes.

tmrparr said...

Sending you peace and is never easy to say good bye...they trust us with this decision and know we will make the right one for them. She came to you for a reason and helped you find your way out of the darkness of depression, but she knew you'd be ok now...

Not preaching here, just writing my heart, as my Labrador Sophie did the same for me, and we said good bye Ocotber 26th...she knew I'd be ok now too.

Kristen Eleni Shellenbarger said...

It doesn't matter if 'those' people don't get it...they don't have to. You get it. Your husband gets it. Denali gets it. That is all that matters.
This is a very personal and private choice and only to be made by you (and your sweet supportive hubby). We are here to support you and tell you- WE GET IT!

achieve1dream said...

I totally understand your reasoning for keeping the news to yourself for now. My non-horse friends would never understand. Sometimes I wonder how I even relate to them.

I'm sorry you're going through this. I hope you're getting to spend time with her even though she is at the vet's. My thoughts are with you.

Marissa said...

This post brought tears to my eyes.... No one who knows what it feels like to be loved by a horse would question the grief you're going through. I'll be thinking of you and your special mare.

Anonymous said...

I am so so sorry. I am grieving the loss of my three rats, who died in the span of three weeks. Cyane passed away at the vets a week and a half ago. And I know what you mean...I cannot talk to anyone about my loss. ESPECIALLY people around here. They would look at me in disgust if they knew I had rats, make nasty comments, until I'd either flip out or start crying. People are cruel.
Denali could NOT have had a better mommy and friend. There are so many people out there who wouldn't have done half of the things you have. Countless vet visits, chiropractors. Shoot! If I am reincarnated as a horse I'd like to be owned by you!

Never EVER let people think that you didn't try. And if you think your "friends" would say Denali is "Just a horse", be sure to say this: "Don't degrade Denali by calling her "Just a horse". I would never say anything like that about your children." That should shut them up.
You gave her the moon and stars, and in return she gave you life and love.

Anonymous said...

I read the above blog page whenever I am in doubt of His plans for us.

Anonymous said...

My heart aches for what you are going through. I just read your blog for the first time. What a beautiful (yet eventful) story from start to finish. Denali's legacy will continue to live on through you and all who have known and loved her. God Bless you.

WishIHadAHorsey said...

Ramble away my friend. You do not need to worry about us here. Grief can take on many forms, just go with it. After a loss, I was physically unable to talk about it to anyone but my husband and my best friend. Literally, physically, I could not pull in enough air to speak. I tried to talk to friends but realized my "selective mutism", for loss of a better term, was driven by the grief and I turned to the two people I trusted the most. Your love and grief will guide you. And this is a safe place to express yourself.

I think tmrparr really summed it up well.

AND I am proud of you deleting any idiots who say otherwise.


Meghan said...

I haven't commented, but I've been reading your blog lately and have found your recent posts very moving, particularly the one with the "perfect day" photos. I can see what a wonderful horse she is. I can see the connection you have. It shows. I'm so sorry things didn't work out better with Denali, but just know that you are doing the best thing you can in this situation. You've gone above and beyond for this horse. So many people would have discarded her when she started having issues, and you've given her time, a tremendous amount of resources, and a chance. I hope someday that knowledge will give you peace, and I hope someday you will find another horse to rescue, when you've had time to heal. There are so many horses out there that need someone who cares, and you obviously do.

Kate said...

This is just breaking my heart and I can't even imagine what you are going through. I think this is the most selfless and kind thing you can do for her. Being the owner of (or owned by) an OTTB mare, I understand that they just do not want to be cooped up! You are giving her freedom to run around where her illness and injuries won't be in her way. Hugs to you from Rhode Island. I will be sending good thoughts your way on Friday.

juliette said...

I am so sorry. Grieving here with you and sending good thoughts and prayers.

OTTB-Little Big Red said...

You bought Denali only a few months before we got LBR. Our journeys have been so different over the past two(2) years. I rode LBR today and thought about all you and Denali have been through. I sang a Denali song to LBR in order to calm us both down when he got over excited. I will continue to do so for a long time.