Dealing with Disappointment

dis·ap·point·ment
ˌdisəˈpointmənt/

the feeling of sadness or displeasure caused by the nonfulfillment of one’s hopes or expectations.

Defining disappointment is easy. Getting over it is a little harder. This feeling is something that we all have dealt with when it comes to horses, and it will surely come up again in the future. For me, it all started on the first day of the first horse show. Fire hasn’t been the easiest horse, and the fact that we got to the show and made it to the ring is a victory in itself. But I would be lying if I didn’t admit I wanted more.

After a couple of successful low rounds, (even if the first one involved her singing her way around the course,) I was feeling relaxed and excited for our first baby green class. As I was cantering around the end of the ring with a smile on my face, Fire exited stage left out the open gate so quickly it made my head spin. Of course, we got eliminated for that. I laughed, learned my next course, and went in and put in our final round of the day.

It sucked getting eliminated. But if that was the worst thing Fire did all day, (it was) then the day was a huge success. So, again another opportunity to feel something and then let it go. Like Elsa does in that Frozen movie, although I admit I haven’t actually watched it yet. But there’s always tomorrow, right?

giphy1

Fast forward to the next day and Fire was extra squirmy to braid. I chalked it up to her being a little out of patience. And when she was making the flehmen response, (curling her upper lip up,) I thought it was because of the new lavender scented braiding gel I was using, not recognizing that that behavior, while usually used to test scents in the air, can also indicate pain or be a sign of colic. I feel terrible I didn’t catch on, but hindsight is always 20/20, and on less than 3 hours of sleep I don’t tend to be the sharpest tool in the shed.

As soon as I put Fire in her stall, I knew something was wrong. She walked right past her hay and starting pawing in her paddock. Went down, rolled, got up, pawed, went down, rolled, etc. Any horse person knows this is not a good sign. As someone who goes from 0-60 in about 3 seconds flat, I told myself to take a breath and calm the F down. So I took a breath and called my vet.

After walking, grazing, and some of the “good drugs” from the vet Fire seems to be doing just fine under my watchful/neurotic eye. So we were a scratch for the day, but she’s ok. And that is all that matters right? There will be plenty more horse shows, but I only have one horse, and her health and happiness are paramount. But there is this small amount of disappointment in me that I didn’t get to go out there and show again today. I’m not sure what to do with it other than remind myself what is important and let go of what is not.

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