Wednesday, July 20, 2011

End of an Era

You never know when an Era begins. It could have been today or yesterday~ or it may be tomorrow or next week or next month. But when an Era is over, you know.

The definition of 'era':
1. A long and distinct period of history with a particular feature or characteristic.

2. A system of chronology dating from a particular noteworthy event.
The Era to which I am referring began about 1980. A noteworthy year to be sure. Lil Mama was two- that's how I judge time- and I had purchased a beautiful younf buckskin mare. Soon after, I met some people who would be my boon companions. They were, and are still, my best friends- Denesirita, Tericita, and Rustinella. We had all purchased young horses and for awhile, we boarded them at the same place.
Oh, we were young and full of vinegar in those early days! Riding anything, laughing at everything and hauling those youngsters around and around. Tericita took Oak Mielle on to an Open reining Championship. Rustenella excelled with Blues in Dressage. Denesirita showed Dr. Drewlittle in reining and then because of a hoof problem retired him to her ranch in the California foothills. I turned my little mare Somebodys Streak into one heck of a family horse for my kids and myself.
But time marches on.
I put my little mare down when she was 26.
Terecita put Oak down two years ago at 27
Rustenella put Blues down a few months ago 28
And sadly Denesirita put Drew down a few days ago ~ he was close to 30.
But we are not crying! ( Well maybe a little bit!)
No, we can all be proud of our horses and our accomplishments with them! Proud that we didn't ever let them suffer. Proud that we didn't sell them off as their usefulness waned, but pampered ( Drew most of all!)and cared for them like the royalty we imagined them to be.
I was lucky enough to see Drew on the morning of his demise. He was galloping across the early morning pasture, his coat still wet from dew. He wasn't lame or stiff in his joints, although he didn't hear well and his eyesight was failing. He bossed the mares and the little gelding that were with him, flashing heels and threatening to let them have it. Denesirita and I stood watching a few moments, marvelling at his age and fortitude.
It was a few hours later that she called to let me know he had twisted his lower intestine and was in so much pain that she was forced to make the ultimate decision for him.
I like to think that China, Blues and Oak- as well as a few others that have crossed our paths- were waiting for him, eagerly nickering, " What the heck took you so long to get here!"
And as one era ends, another shall begin. Or maybe it already has.....


Lisa said...

Lovely post! I haven't read your blog before, but it came up as a recommended item in my google reader feed. I'll be adding you to my regular feed!

Maia said...

That was so beautifully written and so true. It's nice to know that others think of their horses as friends, not just vehicles to make them look good.

Give my sympathy to Deniserata, I know she made the only decision she could, but that doesn't make it easier.

Mikey said...

That brought tears to my eyes. Ahhh, so sad!! Give Deniserata a big hug from me. It's so hard to lose a good horse.

Tracey said...

Sorry to hear that this era has come to a close. Like you, I had my old boy, Comanche, for many years; he was 32 when we finally chose to put him down. I know just how heart wrenching it can be to lose a trusted friend and companion of that many years. My prayers are with you and your friends as you now begin this new era in your lives!

gtyyup said...

Maia said it well written...tears are flowing.

Would you let me publish this in my little local paper? Our readers love stories such as this one. Please send me an email at gtyyup at wildblue dot net and we can discuss it.

Denisarita said...

Thanks for saying what I couldn't. It still makes me cry when I think about it. I know that being his best friend carried a lot of responsibility. It wasn't only feeding, vetting, shoeing and scratching. It also meant being his best friend and freeing him from whatever I could not fix. Old age and a twisted gut I could not fix, so I just had to be his best friend.

Carolyn said...

Hey B -

Thanks for all the recommended reading! I'll take you up on some of those!
Another good one is The Lakeshore Express by Sue Miller. Sexy and multilayered. Extremely well done.