If it’s meant to be, it’ll happen. Maybe not now, but eventually.
Horses ARE resilient. There are many people that horses can love, and many horses that we can love. As long as they’re pain free and getting fed on a regular basis, I’d say most horses live fairly happy lives.
A little story of my own heart horse:
[INDENT]back in 2012, I had an OTTB who was the biggest, most gorgeous hunk of a gelding I’d ever seen. I spent my entire budget on him, showed him once, he coliced, recovered, and then dropped dead of a heart attack in the round pen. I owned him a total of like, six months.
I didn’t go to the barn for several days. I couldn’t. My money was gone (actually, I was in the red after paying for colic surgery), my dreams of showing the 3’6’’ had just dropped dead, and I was overall in a foul place mentally. BUT, I did have another horse and so I eventually had to go out to see her and come up with a new plan. I think he died on a Tuesday, and I went to the barn that Saturday? Anyway…
I walked down the aisle to my mare’s stall and I knew I would have to pass my gelding’s stall, as he was fourth on the right and she was fifth. His stall card was still up and I just knew I would break down crying. Much to my surprise, however, as I got to that fourth stall – suddenly, a big, loud faced paint gelding stuck his face out as if to say “HEY - who the heck are you?” It shocked me so much, I think I laughed - he got some of the cookies I had for my mare, and enjoyed some scratches.
He ended up being a horse in for training. His owner didn’t really mesh with him, but she wanted to get some points on him and sell him. I ended up riding him a few weeks after he got there, and I fell in love. My dad had offered me my college money to buy a new horse as I had graduated with scholarships and it was still in the bank; so I had a budget of $25K. I had approached my trainer about buying him after a couple of months of riding him, but the owner was firm on $30K and I just couldn’t do it.
We did a purchase of him in barn so that I could show him that next year. It was win-win; I had a horse to show, and he got more exposure, but I knew that it wasn’t permanent and he would be sold back at the end of the year. We won everything that year. Everything. I bought a different horse, but it wasn’t the same. The loud faced paint was my heart horse, sent from above, in my gelding’s stall that day my heart was broken and needed healing. When he left the barn, my spark dulled. (It sounds cheesy, but I’m serious - I didn’t want to show the new horse, I wanted my horse.)
Turns out, he had a myriad of health issues. When the owner upped his price to $50K, he was vetted several times, but never passed. She ended up donating him to a riding program for the tax write off.
Lucky for me, tequila gives me confidence. One night, after the college posted an update and he was in the picture on their Instagram, I sent an email to the coach and I basically said - hey, I used to own this horse and if for any reason he ever needs to be rehomed, please consider me and I’m happy to take him.
It took three years, but one morning I opened my email and had a message that he was no longer a fit for the program, they couldn’t keep him sound, and did I want to buy him?
I hooked up my trailer and made the four hour trip to get him that weekend. Purchase price? $1.00. I think if his jaw could’ve hit the floor when I turned the corner, it would have. He didn’t expect to see me, but horses remember.
He has kissing spine, and I’m still weighing my options on how to deal with that as he clearly hurts if you try to even ride just at a walk. He lives in my pasture, and gets jealous any time I work one of my other horses. He screams and carries on any time I hook up the trailer and he doesn’t get to go. He gets special shoes every six weeks, and treats every night before bed. He loves attention so we try to work on showmanship or pretend like we’re setting up for halter so he can still strut around like he owns the place. :winkgrin:
It didn’t happen initially. And I had to go through that heartbreak of losing him. But, I did keep up with where he went and in the end I was able to have him back where he belongs. It doesn’t always happen this way, but if you keep yourself open - it may not be the complete end of your story.