“When do we say I am done?” “No More!” I have taken on a little rescue horse whos name is now Joey
Normally I feel that a name should follow the animal for their life, and try to respect that. But this little guy, seemed to need a new begining. I met him through a friend who has had him for 6 years. He had been released to her. His history is not known for sure but what ever it was, he has put his foot down and says “Never Again!”
When they told me about this little guy, I was expecting a hard to catch saddle horse… but what was offered when I walked through the gate was borderline mustang. As soon as he seen me, he was pressing the fences. And they are barbed wire. At fifty yards was his comfort place… not one inch closer and no corral, so I followed my instinct and allow the bubble to settle. Within an hour and a half, I am four feet from him and can move around freely at that point.
With the scars on his nose, and his reaction to life in general, he has faced and felt a misunderstood war. My little war pony and I wanted him to have a happy ending from the internal demons he has been packing for the last twenty years. So to release them and to look forward to tomorrow I named him Joey as in the movie. He did what he had to and is ready to move on..
Which while standing with him brings up the question, when is enough enough?
In life we all get hurt, we all cry, we all suffer. In our life we face change, fight change, question change and sadly fear change. In our life we can call a friend, talk to a parent, councilor, pay some one to help with change, and eventually get through it.
But what about our animals? A dog, cat or this horse for instance. How do they cope and adjust. I am not talking of your beloved pet Fido, or maybe I am… I am mainly talking of the animals on the other side of the tracks. The ones who are shuffled and tested to their wits end. The one that , like this horse looks at a two legged being and says, “I am better off staying away from them.”
I have worked many horses in my life, and I will forever be a student of the horse… With his silent language he has firmly said “never again”, but I quietly attempt to soften that edge little by little, hoping in my attempts that I can help erase twenty years of history in a few hours… days…
I have to take myself out of my busy life and stop for a while, see what he sees, breathe what he breathes and the most painful, feel what he feels.
This is only for the moments needed, because as he realizes I am here for him, and he no longer needs to be alone, as herd animals usually don’t like being. But he is afraid to let me in, he stands straight and tall, ears up, head up, a statue of stone.
The wind pelts us with rain, slushy snow, soaking our bodies as I wait. Joey oblivious to the cold, he blinks a snow flake off his eye lashes, while a loafing shed is thirty yard’s from us, he has no interest in shelter. We are different species. My hands jammed in my pockets, fingers tingling, my toes frozen I wait. I wait for that sigh, that blink. That tip of the nose in my direction with a softness that says I see you. I wait.
I recite poetry, talk of things no one else knows, I watch the deer as he brings awareness to their camouflage beds, they had quietly rested not ten feet from us.I wait.
My breath visible, my back aches with cold and I start to tremble. I wait. The day is fading to sunset, if there was a sun to set, hidden deep behind the clouds, darkness settling in my heart that maybe I should go, but I wait next to the stone statue, showing no sign of life. Waiting.
He is within touching distance, yet I do not offer touch, I only offer my time at this point. His nose twitches, I see him blink out of the corner of my eye. I know he is alive.
Then out of the blue beyond the hope of acceptance, he turns to me smells my coat, takes a sigh and licks his lips, as if to say, Enough.
I remain as still as he had for the last hour. I wait, he drops his head, I walk away. Enough
To be continued