Sunday, June 12, 2011

Is it Destiny?




Sometimes you just have to wonder.
Is it destiny?
Is it something that has been pre-determined?

Siera came into my life as a young mule that I did not want my husband to buy. I'd had surgery on my shoulders and elbow and didn't want to get involved in training.
After all, I had Badger.

I started Siera under saddle two summers ago. Just before Badger fell ill. She was amazing. She learned quickly and was extremely response to anything I asked of her.

After 3 rides in the round pen, we went solo.

Last fall, after hubby rode her [she definitely does not like men with growly voices], we put her away.

So this spring, Badger's health deteriorates to the point that I cannot ride him. Period. The veterinarian says let him be a pasture 'pet' but at any time he could go into organ failure.
I understand the progression of the disease [COPD] but don't like it. It hurts to watch Badger breath hard, even while at rest. I feel I'm on death watch and cry often.

Early this spring my hubby says *Ride Opal!*. She'll take you anywhere!
...and so I do, and I work intensely with Opal *the seriously people challenged mule* who will come to me now and doesn't show nervousness during being caught. She seems to 'bond' with me but at 28 years old, she isn't going to change that much. She is a nice ride.
But.
A hairline crack shows up in her front left hoof.
Yesterday after a 1/2" rain I come home from work and groom her...the crack has opened and it looks like she'll slough off part of her hoof.

Dammit.
Dammit.

Disgusted and disheartened, I take my lead rope and halter, and work with Eddie and Sundance, grooming them and working on their manners. They are too young to ride and are entering 'the kindergarten' of equine training.

I later walk into the molly pasture and figure I'd call out to Sunshine, Badger's little half sister. She is experienced and may be a good candidate as an alternate. She ignores my call.
But a mule far off by herself picks up her head and
gaits her funny Peruvian Paso gait...
towards me.

Siera.
She stops in front of me and shoves her head towards the halter in my hands.

I feel something between us. It is not something I can put into words, but it is strong. She is begging me please, take me!

I halter her, groom her, and then decide to see what she remembers. She has only been handled for trimming hooves for 8 months.
With a light touch I am able to go through all of her halter commands.

I ask her to walk through mud puddles [she hates mud and puddles].
She stands in the offending goo quietly.
When I trip on some old fencing hubby left in the yard and nearly fall. Siera blows a snort and stiffens up, then softens.

On the trail, she has patience and rarely startles.
Hates mud, some water crossings, but generally aches to please me.

So now I wonder.
A mule I didn't want on our farm...
A mule who seems to silently communicate with me...
A mule who comes to me when Badger falls ill...
A mule who seems to have a spell over me..
[and I over her...silly isn't it?]

A mule I trained so easily...
Did she come into my life for a purpose?
Was it destiny?
Was it good luck?

All I know is that last night my steps were lighter, a smile was on my face, and my heart did not feel so heavy.
Something very intense passed between a human and a mule last night that words cannot describe.

What the hell happened?



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1 comment:

mj said...

Val, How old is she?
My mule Polly was not without faults, not exactly bombproof, but SHE was slow to mature and well worth the wait. I think maybe you are on to something. I certainly hope so, for both your sakes!!!