She died last weekend, on March 24th - One of my friend's birthdays. I found out today, on my birthday party, the day before I turned 15.
Amber was a miracle. She changed my life in more ways than one.
My mom got her when she was 30 and I was about 2 years old. Amber would have been about 20 or just barely older. My mom didn't know much about horses. Everything my mom did, Amber would freak out about. My mom was terrified. She couldn't go near the gate without Amber bucking and rearing and screaming.
Mom called Tass, an amazing horse person whom we learned half of our techniques from. I learned how to ride from her from the start when I was about 5 or 6 years old.
Tass came over and aksed my mom to go inside the pasture with Amber, so she could see what she or Amber was doing wrong. Mom hadn't even touched the gate when Amber started doing her usually routine - bucking and rearing. Tass said that it was nothing that Amber was doing wrong, it was everything that my mom was doing that was wrong. She knew what Amber would do, so she was already panicked and nervous and scared about going even near the gate.
Tass helped my mom and taught her a few things. After a few days or weeks of that, Amber was just fine. My mom went to Parelli clinics and learned more techniques. After a few more weeks Amber could do anything you wanted her to do. Ask her to walk to the ocean and back, she would do it - carefully and safely.
I don't remember much, but I do remember that she was always there for me. She lived in a huge acre ten steps from our porch with Golley and Brisco. Those two will be 22 this year. Thank God I still have them.
The few things I do remember are sweet, sweet memories.
Amber knew everything. Every time I rode her bareback or saddle, she never would let me even come close to falling. She slowed down or sped up when I asked her to.
I remember ever day when I went out to brush her, she made sure it was "our" time. The other horses would always invite themselves over to share some of the carrot I brought. They never got a chance because Amber would run them off if they even thought about stepping inside our 20 foot circle we thought was around us.
Amber was the horse I learned most from and on. She taught me a lot of things and I taught her a lot of things - all of which we learned together. I have heard people say that horses cannot love us. But they are wrong in a way - Horses can love, just maybe not like we do, but they do love. I know she loved me, and she knew I loved her. I still do, and I will always remember to watch my back - Hopefully I will make sure horses won't run over my back like Amber did once. We were walking along and I just stopped, without warning from anyone. I was short - about three feet or so. Amber didn't know I was stopping and ran right into me. It was quite the bump! <3
Those are the a few of the few memories I can remember, but they were all sweet nonetheless.
Three months before I turned 9, we moved up north.
It was just after Christmas when we moved. January 3rd I believe.
I remember the beginning of that trip sorta pretty well.
All we had to do left was drive ourselves up there. All our belongings and our two horses were waiting for us. We couldn't bring Amber up with us because my parents didn't think she would be able to last the winters. They got very cold and very snowy. So there we were, with two of our horses and Amber at our friend's house - who also had horses.
My mom did some last minute vacuuming for the house-hunters. I was holding our cat, Jasper, when she turned on the vacuum. Unfortunately, Jasper didn't like vacuums. He scratched my left hand and tore upstairs. Now today I look at that scar just to the right of my pinkie, and I remember, Oh, I got that the day we left home.
We didn't go to the horses for about two years. Both my parents had a full time job and my brother and sister had school and helped my mom with her job.
We moved into a different house, but stayed in the same city. We finally had time to go work with our horses.
I remember this memory. You know those memories you just can't forget because something bad happened, yea. This was one of those.
My mom, my sister and I were all going to go to the horses. But I didn't want to go because There would be only two horses waiting for us. My horse wouldn't be one of them. I sat in my room and cried for a long time. My dad came in and started yelling at me, saying these words, "Suck it up and move on. No matter what you do will never bring that stupid horse back. Stop your goshdarned crying and get over yourself, that horse won't ever be there for you."
That was the last thing I can remember for a long time. That was the only time I cried, but I mean, how comforting to get talked to like that when you miss someone.
I gotten a facebook up, and I was able to contact my friend finally.
The first time I contacted her was January 29, 2011.
I had thanked her so much for caring for Amber. It meant so much and it still does now.
Amber was at least 28, but we didn't know for sure.
Every few months I would message her to see how my beloved horse was doing. All the messages came back positive.
One dream I had when I was younger was to be a barrel racer. Even if it was only for fun, I wanted to barrel race.
A, our caretakers daughter, did barrel racing with her and showed her as well. They lived the dream together. I was so happy for them, they were living my dream and they had the best time together.
On April 24, 2012 was when Lori stopped replying.
She asked for my number on janruary 11 of this year. She asked for my number, and nothing else.
I had stopped asking because I thought she was going to call or something.
I asked on more time last Friday. She replied with the news I didn't want to read. She lost my number so she didn't call.
Amber died last weekend to what the vet thought was a stroke. She held out hoping that there was something they could to to save her, but the vet said that horses don't usually recover.
Amber was 30+ when she was put down. Her children and her husband all agreed that was the best thing.
Amber was the first horse for our caretaker's daughter, A.
Amber died in the best retirement home. She was loved, she was cared for, she was safe, and she wasn't alone.
I am so thankful for the time we spent together, I will hold it with me forever and whenever I go out to my horses, or buy anew horse. I will always remember what a pain and what a lifesaver my first horse was like. I've worried about her for seven years now, and I am glad to know she will always be safe, cared for, loved, and fed carrots everyday as she walks in the heaven both in my heart and in God's heaven.
Rest In Peace Amber, you were and will always be loved. <3
March 24, 2013.
Goodbye Amber. I will see you again, in time.
God forbid I should go to any Heaven in which there are no horses.