They weren't being auctioned until the next day, so hubby and I had time to talk it over, do a little research and search our souls. Buying them and bringing them home was one of the major events of my life, right up there with graduation from college and marriage. As anyone can tell who has read any one post about the boys, you know how deep my love lies. They truly are my children, my fuzzy children!
Like any parent, I want my children to be happy. Although my horses get unconditional love from me, get good food and proper care and have a clean barn and paddock everyday (well, OK, so maybe not a clean paddock when we have snow on the ground), I think they are missing out on something. My boys want to work. They want to be busy, both physically and mentally.
And I can't give them enough. For the last year or so I've been involved in a mental tug-o-war with myself. It goes something like this:
I should ride one of the horses today.
I tiled (painted, nailed floorboards) and I'm too tired.
Pippin's looking at me. He really wants me to come
down and do something with him.
It's too windy (cold, snowy, hot) to work with the horses.
I should drive Doc today.
This ground driving is a lot of fun, but I can only walk so far.
We've been working for 30 minutes.
You have been wonderful.
Should I push the horses a bit longer? Shall we go a bit faster?
No, they've been great. Let's stop now.
It's a beautiful day. I have an hour. Let's go!
By the time I get you groomed and saddled, I'll have to stop.
I'm thinking that Pippin is ready to pull the carriage.
After all, he used to drive all of the time!
It's not new to him!
But what if he bolts? What if he doesn't respond to me?
I love my horses, but:
- my energy level and strength aren't on par with what they put out.
- things get in the way that limit my time to work with them.
- there is that niggly, hidden deep inside seed of fear that has taken root and shows itself now and then.
I gave some thought to keeping one of them so I could focus on one horse. That is doable. But first, I couldn't decide which one, and second, I couldn't split them up. They are a team. So, with tears flowing down my face, I am letting all of my friends know that I have decided to put my team up for sale. It makes me sad. But I want them to have more. They deserve it.
I talked to a trainer who works with driving horses. He is going to take the horses in June and give them a driving tune-up. Then he will work with me to help sell them. Doing this will give me additional time to decide if I truly can live without horses in the back yard. I may find that I can't sell them, and after their tune-up, I may be more comfortable driving them. Ha! You will have to pull the manure spreader... you'll have to work for your measly ration of hay! However, at that time, if I believe I have made the right decision to make someone else a happy Haffie owner, then, who knows, perhaps I'll revert to Plan A!