I know, it’s almost a month ago, since Marble had her birthday and turned 4 years old. I have been going over in my head about a thousand times, what I should say about her, but the thing is, nothing much has changed over the last year.
Sure, turning four is a big day for some, but for Marble, is wasn’t anything really special. She is still growing like crazy, looking less and less grown up every single day. Needless to say, I won’t be riding her this year, perhaps not next year either.
On the plus side, she has had a fairly good year. Her tendons has tightened up once in a while, sure, when she has been growing too fast, but on the whole, she has not been so bad that she has required painkillers or visits from the vet because of it, and lately, she seems to be outgrowing her lameness more and more permanently, at long last.
She did develop locking stifles a few years back, but we are handling that too, and sure, it bothers her once in a while, but on the whole, we manage to let her have a happy everyday life, most days.
Her aggressive behaviour is subsiding as well. It is not gone, I am not kidding myself, but she bites less and less and it has to be raining and lousy weather for her to be irritable enough to kick at me these days. The boyfriend has not had any bruises from her lately, either. In fact, Marble is starting to seek out our company, wanting us to scratch her ears…
I will admit, the first time she did that, was a huge day for me. Incidentally, it was on her fourth birthday. I was allowed to spend almost half an hour, scratching her ears, for the first time ever, without her snarling and threatening to rip my throat out. She wanted my company, for a change.
When you have a horse like Marble, who is usually so sick, and you go through every day, waiting for tomorrow to be better, wanting to give her a chance to grow up and grow out of it, it is the little things like this that matters. I usually feel like I am imposing on her, forcing my company on her, and it is a huge relieve when she finally comes to me.
So all in all, we are doing much better. I am actually looking forward to this summer, and all the things I may be able to play with her this year, if she isn’t lame every other day anymore.
This should be a happy post, and it is, somewhat. I just can’t help it, every time I look at her these days, I am reminded of how many of her kin, dies on the race track every single day. I signed up to follow this blog, http://horseracingwrongs.com/ and at first, I figured I would share it every time another horse died on the track. You know, raise awareness. The least I could do, was share, right? Make sure that no horse died without having his name shared… But when you follow this blog, you realise that it is every single day. One dead, two dead, one “broken down…” It is driving me insane. By now, I still get the emails from the blog, but I can’t make myself open them anymore. I can’t keep seeing those young horses die on the track, every day. I am just not cut out to keep sharing this.
And then a video like this one shows up, https://www.facebook.com/official.peta/videos/10153280895929586/?pnref=story
The slow motion of that two year old, with the shattered cannon bone… I believe that for the first time in my life, words are failing me.
Seeing something like this, I just want to keep Marble on my pasture forever, (and I will,) never ride her, just cuddle her and keep fighting my little fight to make her happy and spend the rest of our lives being thankful that she never got to see a race track and that she might have had a hard time, growing up, but she will never know how impossibly cruel her life could have been.
So yeah, this is why I have not written a “happy birthday post” for my four year old thoroughbred mare until now. Most of her kin, never get to be, four years old and it is haunting me lately, every time I look at her. How little I can do to change it.
(Marble, 2012, just arrived home.)
And then I tell myself, that there is one thing I can do. I can love her. I can keep her safe. I can make sure that she grows up and lives a long and happy life. I can’t save the world, but I can save her, no matter how many leg issues we have had or how aggressive or explosive she has been at times.
Happy birthday, Marble Dane. You are so stuck with me. I am very happy that you are, at long last, choosing me. Mostly, though, I am happy to see you playing with the others, at like any four year old should do. Play.