Sad News & The End of a Chapter

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Last night, I learned some tough news. Drifter’s owners have decided that they are going to sell him. While I was always aware that my situation with Drifter would end at some point, it did come as a shock that that time is now.

Or pretty much now. I will still ride him until he is sold. But he will be sold, and very likely that will be soon. I have to be grateful for the opportunity to bring up such an incredible horse, and his owners have been so generous with me. I think that’s partly why it’s so hard to lose him.

I’m still processing. Drifter and I come so far together, and I felt like we were just getting to the good stuff. The time when the years of hard work would start to pay off. After our first (and now last) show season, I was full of confidence that the next year would be full of even better things to come.

I’m grieving for the loss of this relationship. And I’m also grieving for the loss of my goals and plans. Because I love competing and finally felt like I had a horse that I could be successful with. And now someone else will be, instead.

I’m not sure what comes next. I’ve started over and over and over with different horses for the last five years as I’ve made my way through the horse world as a horse-less adult amateur. I’ve had the support of wonderful people, who have generously allowed me to ride and compete their horses. So in that regard I feel very lucky and I would never want to sound ungrateful, bitter or angry.

I’m just very sad. And a little adrift.

As my good friend Chelsie reminded me: Everything is okay in the end; if it’s not okay, then it’s not the end. Owning a horse isn’t in the cards for me right now. So I’ll do what I – and many adult ammies – have always done. I’ll dust myself off and figure something out. I’ll keep riding. I’ll pick new goals. But first, I’m going to drink a glass (or two or a bottle) of wine, eat some ice cream and watch Netflix until I feel a little less fragile.

Words of support and encouragement from friends in the equestrian blogger community would go a long way right now. You’ve all been in tough spots before and come out the other side. After all, if you’re going to love horses, you have to be prepared for heartbreak, right?

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22 thoughts on “Sad News & The End of a Chapter

  1. I am so sorry to see this. It is heartbreaking to loose a horse whether it is sold or has to be euthanized it is just awful. We do form real bonds with our horses and the journey can have ups and downs that we go through together. I had to have two horses euthanized in one year. I took a couple of months of no riding. Then I part boarded a hunter ( I’m a dressage rider so this was a way to not try to replace my lost horses). After a few months I decided I needed another horse or I was going to get old very quickly. Take some time when Drifter is sold if you need to and then you can find the resolve to start over. Much sympathy!

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  2. My heart hurts for you!! I totally understand feeling adrift and at loss for what to do. This same situation happened to me several times and it never gets easier. Feel free to reach out to me on Facebook or email, heartofhope10(at)gmail.com. Hugs!

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  3. It is very hard. I know the feeling, trust me. I would probably need more wine and add pie to the mix. It does not get easier for me, as heartofhope10 said. However, that what it is like riding other people’s horses. BUT you have been very fortunate to ride so many horses and to learn from so many! You are not stagnant! Focus on the positive. I miss being able to ride many different horses. You are doing the right thing. The time will come when you can have your own, but the time is not now as you say. Focus on the fact that you have prepared Drifter well and he is better for being in your care. You will have all the memories you shared together to remember him. You now have to opportunity to grow, learn, teach, and make new memories with another one. You and the horse will be better for it! Your friend is right that all will be right in the end.

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  4. Thats heartbreaking to hear. Losing a horse with whom you have been through so much is very difficult.
    As a way to bridge the time until you find another I suggest coaching kids. Children are joyous and I have lived vicariously through them until the opportunity came up that allowed me to ride regularly again.
    Horses in my future isn’t even an option. I will always circle back and so can you.

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  5. Oh no, I’m so sad to hear this. Maybe he’ll find a home close by and you can work something out with the new owner? Or at least pop by and give some cookies.
    Hugs and wine and ice cream.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So sorry to read this.
    I rode other people’s horses, forever. Every time, hard to say goodbye. Sometimes it seemed as if it was becoming a bit easier. Until that super mare sold…
    Made me ditch everything and become determined to somehow have my own.
    Took a very long time, and the first fit was , well , not a fit at all. But a step in the right direction. Better now 🙂
    Hoping it will happen for you one day too! It is worth the wait!!! Hang in there 🙂

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    1. Thanks. Riding lots of horses is such great experience, and as a rider having people offer their horses is such a blessing. But it is hard, at the end, to lose them when you’ve built such a relationship with them. One day I will own my own! Not right now (because fiscal responsibility, lame) but one day!

      Liked by 1 person

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