It’s been too long since I’ve showed pictures of Marble. Too long. The trouble is, she is usually the last horse I work with. It is installed deeply in my by now, that she has leg issues and she needs to decide for herself if she wants to work or not. Usually she is too shy to come asking, and as such, we just do the usual. You know, hoof cleaning, showering when its hot, feeding, discussing whether or not to bite my face off. Stuff like that.
Lately, she has started playing Join Up with me. Oh, yes, my horse is using horsemanship on me. When ever I show up to clean her hooves, she walks away. When I follow, because I’m a dumbass, she invites me in and lo and behold, I’m the one being trained.
Not to mention, when I have tried walking with her in a rope around her neck, she has instantly run off. So, all in all, Marble has been bullying me quite a lot lately, and I have totally let her, because I am so happy that she is healthy and happy enough to be doing it, at long last.
Her, playing with me, is MUCH better than her responding aggressively whenever I show up, telling me not to touch her. She is actually inviting me in now, even if it is done in a slightly bullying and (in a foreseeable future) dangerous way.
So, the boyfriend was with us the other day.
I kinda asked him to run with her, because she has not been bullying him and sometimes it is better to just have someone else take over, rather than pick a fight you are going to lose. Marble and I are fragile at the moment, where as she still respects him greatly.
She isn’t lame anymore either, which is fantastic. Especially now, when spring is here and she is starting to grow again. This is usually the worst time of the year for her.
I am so glad to see her recovering, at long last. Fingers crossed that she is finally out of the woods. I keep saying that. One day it will be true.
I won’t say that she isn’t still Marble.
Lemme zoom that in for you…
I will say, that there is a difference to her anger now. First off, in this picture, she actually did not bite. She threatened, and bumped him with her teeth, making sure he knew she was contemplating taking his arm off. This is a HUGE improvement for her.
Most of the time though, she was mindnumbingly sweet, lowering her head, telling her human that she was SO good, and that she was absolutely with him. This is a response I never dared hope we would get from Marble.
Even if it makes it very hard to work with her. The boyfriend was kinda going, “I can’t control the direction when she does that!” And I was holding back tears of relief and joy, whispering “Nobody cares. As long as she does that, she can go where ever she wants! Tell her she is good, and that you understand her message. Tell her she is perfect, because she bloody well is.”
I will say that I am not a fan of her jumping technique.
Comparing her to Apocalipse, for better visual understanding, this is a horse who jumps with her back lowered and on stiff legs.
Maybe she just thinks it is difficult. Maybe she is expecting it to hurt her front legs.
Maybe, just maybe, it does hurt still, just a little bit. I’ll have to watch her some more. And drive myself insane some more.
But no matter what, this, all of this is a huge improvement for her. Mostly her attitude change is telling me that we are moving in the right direction, and that her legs are recovering. I do not expect her anger to go away, until she is 100% pain free and has been so for a very long time. That is usually the last to change. We are getting there, though. And I maybe wouldn’t be experimenting with letting her bully me if I did not have Aston as a back up, but I really do think it does wonders for her mental health and happiness and anyone who knows us, knows that she needs that more than anything. I can take that hit, to see her happy. I can take any hit to have her live a long and pain free life, licking my neck instead of trying to snap it. I’ll Join Up anytime she needs me to.