An unexpected job offer recently catapulted my life – and everyone around me – into chaos.
My dream employer called me an offered me (ME!) a job. I could have fainted right then and there. While negotiating a career change and planning a move can be difficult, it’s compounded when factoring in a horse. Lucky for me, this dream job wasn’t far away. I would still be living in the same state, and actually in a city closer to my family.
Everything seemed to be coming together.
I’m three weeks into the new job and am really enjoying it. Slowly my life is coming together in this new city. Belinda, my Hanoverian mare, moved to a new boarding facility last week. The move was tough. I loved where Belinda was boarded. We spent a year and a half at a small farm in a lovely couple’s backyard pasture of 5 acres. Belinda was the most relaxed I’d ever seen her. We shed tearful goodbyes when I gave them the news.
Finding a new barn was equally as hard. I started the tours – calling phone numbers from advertisements and making the trek out to a farm or two in my off hours. I frowned at dilapidated stalls and muck-ridden arenas. I shied away from questionable management practices and spent many sleepless nights praying/hoping/wishing for ways to get my skiddish mare into the trailer.
Finally I found a place that made sense for us. A small 9-stall operation with ample shade (great for my non-sweating black mare in Florida) with an excellent feeding schedule and plenty of turn out. The farm has an active community of adult amateur riders and a knowledgeable trainer that show, go to hunter paces and trail ride often. It was the place I had been looking for all along.
The day came for Belinda to make the move. After some stubbornness, we got her in the trailer and arrived safely at her new home.
I was surprised to see that Belinda, my usually calm and quiet mare, was quite shaken by her new surroundings. She had been to shows all over the place and never batted an eye before. To make it worse, the mare somehow ripped open her face and required constant care for the first few days.
Belinda refused to eat and was driven into heat. She screamed for the other horses. When turned out, she became the needy girl in the group who overwhelmed the others.
Her behavior over the first two weeks at the new farm made me second guess the decision to move her at all. I felt guilty when I thought of her fretting alone in her paddock during the Florida summer thunderstorms, confused as to where she was. I just wanted my happy-go-lucky girl back.
A few more weeks passed and I could see my normal Belinda reemerging. Our new trainer, Lauren, suggested working her regularly and getting her used to a new routine, which we did. We went on our first trail ride with a few others and Belinda was great. She really seemed to enjoy it.
This is the first time Belinda has really been worked with other horses. At our last boarding facility, we usually rode alone because her pasture mates were not riding horses. It’s a welcomed change.
Here’s hoping that Belinda continues to settle in and we can start planning new adventures with new friends very soon.