Monday, November 8, 2010

Bad Horse Mommy

The past few weeks my mind has been on anything but my Little Princess. Instead, it as been pretty much consumed by the pressing concerns of HS's business and quite frankly, our livelihood. It isnt something I can explain but let's just say that these past few weeks have been really stressful, busy and hard on my ever-sensitive-nerves. I've been getting down to the barn at 4-5 days a week at least but only for short visits... some days I've only taken the time to stand at the gate and watch her graze for a moment... or I just walk out and stroke that downy winter coat below her throat latch (the only patch of her that remains clean) and I say a little prayer that maybe some day soon I'll have the time and mindset to do something with my pretty little mare.

I've been feeling guilty for not spending more time with her but am also so confident that she has been so well looked after by the wonderful people I board off of- she has plenty of good feed, a buddy, some grass and a warm place to sleep at night... which I like to think ads up to the quotent of a horsey good life.

But then on Saturday I came out to the barn and realized that I had completely forgotten to pick up a bag of grain and that she had been out for nearly two days. Not cool. Then I realized that there was a note on the board letting me know that the bald spot I'd found on her cheek is really dry and needs attention. And then this evening it was pointed out that I had slowly crapped out on treating her mud fever and that it was getting worse...then the (awesome) lady I board off noticed Princess coughing. Which pretty much confirmed in my mind that I'm a crap horse mommy.

I cried. Well, not really but it was a near thing. I ate a bag of mini eggs instead. Not helpful. When I was done the mini eggs I got to work on the mental list of all my deficiency's as a horse mom. Then, when that was done, I got to beating myself up over it. I'm pretty good at that....I've got practice! I get this bunched up knot of anxiety in my chest and my stomach gets all flippity floppy and I cant sit still. The worst part though is that running commentary in my head that runs through all the horrible things that I've done- all my failings as a caregiver to my horses, man, family, cats, dogs, etc.. and OMG all those guppies I killed back in elementary school! Then I tell myself I should just sell Princess and Abby and not even have a horse...

*big sigh*

But this evening I decided that I really need to stop doing that. I'm going to let this one go. I still feel like I need to own the mistake. I am not telling you this (my hypothetical reader) to ease my conscience... I failed to meet my own expectations as a horse owner and while I am not proud of it I'm going to give myself a "get out of jail free card" on this one....which is a novel concept to me but one I think I could really grow to like:) While most days I try to be a good horseman sometimes I fail to try hard enough... or at all. Some days I suck. The point is that we all fail sometimes. And that's not the end of the world. It's isnt good but I didnt kill anyone or burn my house down (yet *knocking on wood*).

Tomorrow my Princess will get some cough medicine, she'll get an ointment for her spot and I'll treat her mud fever. Tomorrow I will step up and do better. And I'll leave the guilt and the self deprecation behind.


  1. Yea, those guys' businesses...that provides for our horsey-lifestyles...sure have a way of taking over.

    Princess will survive and none the worse for wear. Good for you for deciding that it just needs to be dealt with and DO NOT spend the effort beating yourself up over it. You acknowledged it and you will take care of it.

    Speaking of...I have 2 horses missing shoes (both noticed before my weekend trip and I could not bring myself to care enough to call the farrier for an appointment), the other is due for a reset and I have 3 that I need to trim. The geldings are also getting a bit perturbed by this 'no grain' business...again, I did not care. Too wore out.

    I tell ya, a couple of days off and I feel like a new woman. It's back to 'the grind' with re-newed vigor.

  2. Hope the stress with HS's situation cools off soon. That kind of stress is tough. It is hard to get other fun stuff done when you are worried.

    I'm sure Princess will survive no worse for wear - don't be too hard on yourself. None of us are perfect... You are lucky to have such a great place to board - they are keeping an eye on your girl and wouldn't let anything bad happen to her.

  3. I think we have all been there. At least I have... and it sounds like someone is watching out for them for you until you get back on track. And you will, just give it time. Ask for help if need be, and don't forget how theraputic horses are.

  4. Hate when things just get away from ya like that! Ponies can be so high maintenance some times! lol They are generally pretty darn forgiving though. It happens, not worth beating yourself up over. All you can do is try to be better going forward. I'm sure you're a great horsey mom and LP is plenty happy.

  5. Hey honey

    What you have just experienced is mindfulness. You are aware of the situation, you are going to address it and mindful of what you need to do to accomplish it. You can't do any better then that. Now let it go. I know you would NEVER do anything that would actually endanger your horse or any other animal that you care for.

    HS is your main concern right now and he needs all the support you can give him, rely on those that can help you with the rest. Not a single member of your family can give him what you can so you haven't erred anywhere. You are taking care of who counts most in your life. Be proud of that choice!

    Love you both.....


  6. Good for you for acknowleging there is something that needs to be done and you are gonna do something aobut it, no need for beating yourself up.
    There are times of stress and busyness in life and you have someone watching out for your pony too, she will be fine.

  7. Keep your chin up! No one is perfect and even those who seem to be have something they have pushed under the rug and out of sight!
    You can only do what you can do in a day, whether it be worry yourself silly or dote over your horse. We all have limits to what we can "make" happen from day to day.

  8. No one is perfect. Just do the best you can, with what you have and know. :)

    And cheer up! Hope all is better in your little corner of the world.