Some times I just wish things had turned out differently…

Gen is my horse. Period.

He picked me. He suckered me in and made me fall in love with him. I think that he could spot a sucker from a mile away. I leased him first, and then he was given to me. Everyone could tell that he was my horse, even his owner which is why he became mine.

Gen has always been a fickle horse. From throwing kicks at my trainers head during a lesson to ripping the lead rope out of a barn workers hands he always lets you know how he feels about you. One of the biggest complements that I have ever received was from a fellow boarder at a barn about a year after I got Gen. She said that his eye changed as soon as I walked in to the barn. She said that when I was not around Gen was ornery, unhappy and mean. As soon as I walked in to the barn his eye would suddenly soften and he would turn in to the big softy that you all know him as.

I have had Gen since 2005. He was retired back in 2007. I have owned him for a lot longer retired than as a riding horse.

Most of the time I am fine with Gen’s retirement. Gen was perfect for me most of the time. His gaits fit me perfectly so the two years that I rode him were like magic. I can’t help but smile as I remember flying through the fields on him at a full out gallop. Even though Gen was my dressage pony he did a perfect 2 foot course for me prompting my friends and fellow boarders to question why we didn’t do some hunter classes. I know that we had our bad days, I can still hear the whistle caused by Gen’s legs flying close to my head during an epic buck, or the days were I just had to let him run because he was starting to rear, but those days are fuzzy, like an out of focus picture.

I miss riding Gen. I miss having a horse that was so in tune with me that I could just think of something and he would do it. Gen gave me his heart under saddle.

Somedays I look at him and think about getting on him and walking him around. Gen was brave as anything so an ambling trail ride would be perfect.

But then I think about him tripping, or rearing and hurting himself and I know I couldn’t do it.

My vet has been very clear about this. Gen can only be walked under saddle. Even then it can only be for short periods of time. He cannot medically clear my pony to even take a single trot step under tack.

If Gen were a quieter horse, I think I would do it. He is not though. Gen is Gen.

If he is stupid in his field and kills himself that is on him. If I ride him and he is stupid and kills himself that is on me. So it isn’t worth the risk because I know I couldn’t live with myself if that happened.

That doesn’t stop me from getting sad sometimes though. When I go to a show and I see a big gray horse acting up I get a little teary. I am lucky that I don’t have to miss him because he is still around, but I truly miss riding him. I feel so lucky that I have had X, Phoenix, the SchoolMaster, and Lucky to ride, but in the same breath I can’t help but be a little resentful that I don’t get my perfect happy ending. There is no real point to this post. I am just a little sad about not being able to ride my horse. It happens sometimes. Most of the time I am so happy and proud of all I have done while still keeping Gen happy and in the life he is accustom, but today I just wish I lived in a Fairy Tale world where everything has a happy ending. I will get over myself, I always do. A pity party for one can only last do long…

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7 thoughts on “Some times I just wish things had turned out differently…

  1. I hear ya. Ozzy isn’t fully retired, but I miss endurance in a way that aches. I miss galloping the open stretches and climbing steep terrain and trusting him completely in unfamiliar surroundings. I miss the hours of training and competition. Sure, I can still trail ride him, but it’s just not the same. Sure, I can ride him in the ring all I want, but neither one of us enjoys it. I still hold out hope that he might make a comeback, which I guess makes it sting less than your situation. I’m done rambling… I just… it makes me sad to read this entry. 😦

  2. I can understand how you feel about not being able to ride your “perfect for you horse” Gen. You were lucky enough to have had a few good years of knowing what it’s like to be in synch with your horse. Even though you may not be able to ride him anymore you are still lucky enough to have him with you to play with and love. He appreciates it and loves you back and you have made a horse’s life comfortable and happy. If Gen had belonged to anyone else, he might not be here right now. So continue to enjoy Gen while you have him and enjoy riding Lucky. I think we sometimes don’t realize how truly blessed we are to even have horses in our lives because of all the problems they have and all the heartache they can cause us. But think of all the people who don’t have a clue what it’s like to be loved by a horse and smile because you are loved by Gen.

  3. I understand. Really. But we keep doing it. and doing it, and doing it.

    Here is a 20 year recap of my equine career. Beginning with Frix, who was really horse number three. He is the one that fell, at the walk, landed on me and sent me to the hospital with a brain injury from which I am permanently disabled. I was wearing a helmet) Then he colicked and was put down. Two months in the hospital, 6 months full time off work, 6 more part time off work. When I began riding again I had to learn to post all over from the beginning.

    If only things had been different with Janow. I had him 18 years and loved him to death, after about the first year. The bond took a while. He spent a year with a tendon injury, had one rush to the hospital with colic and foundered three times. I had an exploding tendon and surgery that left me in a cast for a year and limping forever, lumbar fusion, that had me in severe pain for more than a year before and in bed or PT for a year after. Repeat that all again with the second fusion to do two more discs. That’s a lot of down time for a horse and rider in 18 years.

    Then there was Maggie, who I really did love from the beginning and even more in the last moments, 6 months and $20,000.00 later. I drove her twice.

    Now there is Yndi, the trained-to-drive mare that, 9 months later (and 4 trainers) still isn’t trained to drive. Yndi the Drama Queen, who resisted the shoer so long on Friday that he gave up and I called the vet to get some Dermosedan Paste.

  4. Yes, why do we do this? There are so many ups and downs with horses. When it all goes well, we feel like we’re on top of the world. But then the next week (day, minute), our hopes are dashed and dreams crushed, or at least sometimes it feels that way. But if we didn’t have horses in our lives then the world would be a very boring place. The highs are worth the lows (most of the time 🙂

  5. So we have all had the same ups and downs. 3 horses in 6 years and 2 had to be put down. Of course I have another one and we are having small ups and downs. I didn’t realize it until now but we should be happy if we have more ups than downs or biggers ups than downs. Thanks for helping me get a better perspective.

  6. What is it with greys? Jackson picked me, much as Gen picked you. Jackson has always been sweet, there isn’t a bone of ornery in him, but he was also very clear that he was MY horse. I bought him when he was six, and I retired him when he was eight. Like you, it just didn’t seem fair. It still doesn’t. I love Winston, of course, but I do miss riding Jackson. He was so enthusiastic about our rides.

  7. I’m lucky, and I have my Paj, whom I love to bits. But I still miss my Hans. I miss him every day. I showed him for 11 years, and retired him when he began to show signs of arthritis. I missed riding him (still do), but I loved him in his retirement too. We lost him to cancer, and I miss him every day. Now I’m going to shed some tears for you and me and Gen and Hans.

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