|She spent a lot of time lounging in the hay piles, haha.|
Following the message of the foals birth, I danced around a bit at the prospect that she would be for sale (the only Tristan foal out of 5 this year to be up for grabs... they are hard to get a hold of!). And just as quickly, kinda recoiled into an eternal pros/cons list as I figured out what I was going to do.
I mean, talking babies is a fun pass-time, but would I actually bite the bullet and commit?
In a lot of ways it felt surreal - most Tristan foals were snatched up long before I had the opportunity to actually think logistics instead of, "Oh my god he/she is so cute, that would be so cool if I could bring him/her home!" But this one arrived into the world safely and was 100% available, with me being first in line to make that decision, so should I choose (stalking tendencies do pay off).
It honestly took a few weeks - I mulled the prospect of adding a baby to my herd over and over again in my head.
Was this something I really wanted?
Did I have the time/money/energy to commit?
In the end, I played hokey pokey with commitment, and although my heart said, "Do it, you won't regret it!", my head was ever-logical and reminded me I didn't really need another horse.
But I had waited years for this exact opportunity. And it was right in front of me, within a fingers grasp.
Would I let the opportunity slip past me again, or would I see all of the signs for what it was? I mean, of all the days to born, how fitting that the only available Tristan foal arrive on Suzie's birthday? And how perfect that a really good friend of mine in Alberta offered to pick her up and board her once weaned so we wouldn't have as long of a drive to go get her...
Despite all of the signs pointing in one direction, I still wavered.
One evening, a few weeks after the foal was born I abruptly got up from the couch after playing the "Should I/should I not?" game for the twentieth time in a row and marched into the bedroom, calling behind me to The Boy, "Where is your lucky coin?"The coin was one he found in the hospital parking lot after his grandmother passed.
My Dad had always told me if you have an important decision or a moment of indecisiveness in your life that you simply cannot choose, you flip a coin. Taking in his words of wisdom, we stood in the bedroom, on the edge of deliberation and hysterics that a coin was going to make the final decision.
I noted that I would call the side as the coin was flipped in the air and as The Boy tossed the Canadian Loonie into the air, I verbalized, "Tails."
It felt like eternity as he caught the coin, flipped it over and showed which side had come up.
We both looked at each other, a bit dumb-founded and I simply stated, "Well I guess we're getting another horse!"
I let the new owner of the broodmare know our final decision and sent a deposit for the filly after a contract was drafted up and everything appeared to be savory.
The next few months were filled with brief updates and as the days ticked by, it started to feel more real. We made some adjustments at the barn, including modifying the one existing paddock to keep the baby separate upon arrival.
I kept the news quite guarded, despite the amount of excitement and happiness I felt, as I knew all to well that horses are horses (especially baby horses). The next five months were painful, and I sent requests for updates probably way too often. However, she was growing up well and looked like a healthy young horse.
Over the period of a few months we started to work out the logistics of transporting her, as well as the timeline of her weaning, as Northern BC and Alberta tend to become treacherous near the end of October and into early November. Safety was top priority, and we didn't really plan definitive dates, as the weather would be a large indicating factor. The broodmare's owner offered to let the foal stay on property until Spring, should the weather be too poor to effectively navigate the Northern Highways which claim so many vehicles in the Winter.
As October came, we waited with baited breath as Thanksgiving weekend arrived and a good friend of mine was scheduled to pick her up and bring her back to her place. Thankfully, the weather cooperated and it looked as though we would be in the clear to safely head that way the following weekend.
The baby arrived in good spirits at my friend's place in Alberta - the lack of handling she received as a foal made things like leading and catching increasingly difficult, but Alaina assured me there was a good brain under there.
|Baby and Alberta Equest <3|
As a sidenote - why do people kick their foals out to pasture and do nothing with them until weaning?! I seriously cannot understand the reasoning and while I understand it is quite common for some horse people, I really don't understand it's purpose. The breeder who was more local to us did a lot of preparation training with her babies - including trailer loading and farrier work - and its a bit sad to see that her own ethics with her foals did not carry on past this.
Anyways, that soap-box rant aside, we made our way to Alberta this past weekend in a whirlwind trip that I still need a few days to recover from. We covered over 2500km (more, if you include driving to outer cities for shopping, etc) in three days and suffice to say, I am officially over being in a vehicle for any period of time.
Thankfully, the baby travelled well and she is officially (and finally!) home!
|I met her at like, midnight when we got to Alberta, haha.|
(Part 3 coming soon)