M. Linda Graham
He Never Let Me Fall
Updated: Mar 10, 2020
Happy Daylights Saving time! And thanks for checking out the ”EveryDay Dances” weekly blog. Spring ahead = spring just around the corner, or, as horse peeps call it, “mud season,” which follows the “freeze my ass off season” & precedes “fly season.” Autumn, the perfect season, is the “favorite day of the year.”
My hope is to offer a blog every Monday that plays with connections between the arts (movement/dance specifically), animals, imagination, spirit and storytelling. All of these areas will not be a part of every blog – I expect the focus will skitter this way and that. But withal, my goal is to offer an insight discerned and connected to an uplifting thought, provoking a lighter perspective to start the week.
This week, I’d like to offer a grateful shout out to those amazing veterinarians who help critter owners through the hardest moments of pet ownership. Last week, as I was bringing Jo in from her paddock, I noticed a familiar quartet clustered to one side of the barn: the vet, the trainer, the owner (I presume) and a relaxed horse. They hovered near the drive, behind the barn, out of view of the road – a discreet, convenient location for a rendering co. truck to load a large body. Grief ambushed me: heat welled up behind my eyes, and sudden salt tears rolled down my cheeks as a blend of choking, vomit, and a bloated weight filled my chest. Last April I stood in that place, heaving sobs for the beautiful elderly equine gentleman whose head I held as the vet administered the necessary shots to relieve him forever of that twisted horror called colic.
At the age of 30, StarBuck had lived a long, healthy life. He was an uncomplicated horse, the perfect schoolmaster to introduce me to this thing called “dressage.” We’d formed an easy-going, pleasant relationship, with him being, I think (in retrospect), the one who was really in charge most of the time. But he let me think I knew something. He never let me fall.
The colic set in rapidly, with unrelenting agony.
The vet, who’s name I do not recall, came on short notice from the nearest clinic. Calming injection, examination, diagnosis, prognosis, all happened rapidly. Call the rendering people. Get out the credit card. The vet, who had seen this, done this, so many times, was professional, comforting, patient, kind and understanding, offering me options (“you don’t have to stay”) even as the patient had no good ones. No pressure. Hiccuping sobs. Now.
The Rainbow bridge is a charming thought but there’s no pot of gold at the end. You couldn’t take it with you anyway. Perhaps that greener pasture is true enough. Perhaps it is here, now.
So here’s my observation:
When my time comes, call the vet.
Ok. So maybe that wasn’t the most uplifting of blog posts. But isn’t it good to know that there are amazingly knowledgeable, patient humans out there who help us and our fur friends navigate the worst of necessary times with clear-eyed kindness and swift mercy?
So today, consider offering a random note of appreciation to your favorite veterinarian.
And hug your beloved fur buddy.