Question about healing after loss - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 02:04 PM Thread Starter
Weanling
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Massachusetts
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Question about healing after loss

My beloved heart horse passed on the 21st. I think it was his heart. There were no signs that he struggled at all. The BO found him in the a.m. when she went out to feed. I knew he was slowing down, and after his choke episode the week before, he just wasn't bouncing back. The vet was coming out to check on him later that day.

I didn't know it would hurt so much. Looking back I think he was saying goodbye when i saw him tuesday night, he rubbed on me longer than usual.

If you have lost a very dear horse, how did you help yourself heal/ grieve?

His ashes are coming home saturday and I know i'm going to try to spread some over the field where he was born. ( if the original owner still owns the property)

I find myself crying at the oddest of times. Its as bad, if not worse, than loosing a human family member.

RIP ~ Mr. Bass 06/09/1985-01/21/2015 my dearest friend
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post #2 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 03:06 PM
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I'm sorry for your loss. This sounds horrible...but I find losing an animal family member almost harder than losing a human one. I'm grateful that none of my family members have passed suddenly. It was like I almost had time to grieve BEFORE they passed. That's not the same as my animals though. I haven't lost a horse. I have one that's almost 27, so I know it will happen...but I can't even imagine. But I have lost dogs suddenly. It's just the worst feeling in the world. I think you just have to go through the process though. Cry when you want to cry. Eventually you will be able to look back and just smile.

Hang in there. I'll say a prayer for you.
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post #3 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 03:09 PM Thread Starter
Weanling
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenkat86 View Post
I'm sorry for your loss. This sounds horrible...but I find losing an animal family member almost harder than losing a human one. I'm grateful that none of my family members have passed suddenly. It was like I almost had time to grieve BEFORE they passed. That's not the same as my animals though. I haven't lost a horse. I have one that's almost 27, so I know it will happen...but I can't even imagine. But I have lost dogs suddenly. It's just the worst feeling in the world. I think you just have to go through the process though. Cry when you want to cry. Eventually you will be able to look back and just smile.

Hang in there. I'll say a prayer for you.

thank you

RIP ~ Mr. Bass 06/09/1985-01/21/2015 my dearest friend
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post #4 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 03:11 PM
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I'm a mormon, so I believe in heaven, etc. After Ebony passed, I was heart broken, she was my firsthorse and had taught me everything! I love this poem, though. It got me through so many bad days. I took months to get out of a depression type state, because it was my fault. I was stupid and inconsiderate and it caused her to leave. :( But, this poem is so wonderful and my favorite ever!

My Grandest Foal
I'LL LEND YOU FOR A LITTLE WHILE
MY GRANDEST FOAL, HE SAID.
FOR YOU TO LOVE WHILE SHE'S ALIVE
AND MORN FOR WHEN SHE'S DEAD.
IT MAY BE ONE OR TWENTY YEARS,
OR DAYS OR MONTHS, YOU SEE.
BUT, WILL YOU, TILL I TAKE HER BACK,
TAKE CARE OF HER FOR ME?
SHE'LL BRING HER CHARMS TO GLADDEN YOU,
AND SHOULD HER STAY BE BRIEF,
YOU'LL HAVE TREASURED MEMORIES
AS SOLACE FOR YOUR GRIEF.
I CANNOT PROMISE SHE'LL STAY,
SINCE ALL FROM EARTH RETURN.
BUT, THERE ARE LESSONS TAUGHT ON EARTH
I WANT THIS FOAL TO LEARN.
I'VE LOOKED THE WIDE WORLD OVER
IN MY SEARCH FOR TEACHERS TRUE.
AND FROM THE THRONGS THAT CROWD LIFE'S LANES,
WITH TRUST, I HAVE SELECTED YOU.
NOW WILL YOU GIVE HER YOUR TOTAL LOVE?
NOR THINK THE LABOR VAIN,
NOR HATE ME WHEN I COME
TO TAKE HER BACK AGAIN?
I KNOW YOU'LL GIVE HER TENDERNESS
AND LOVE WILL BLOOM EACH DAY.
AND FOR THE HAPPINESS YOU'VE KNOWN!
FOREVER GRATEFUL STAY.
BUT SHOULD I COME AND CALL FOR HER
MUCH SOON THAN YOU PLANNED
YOU'LL BRAVE THE BITTER GRIEF THAT COMES
AND SOMEDAY YOU'LL UNDERSTAND.
FOR THOUGH I'LL CALL HER HOME TO ME
THIS PROMISE TO YOU I DO MAKE,
FOR ALL THE LOVE AND CARE YOU GAVE
SHE'LL WAIT FOR YOU, INSIDE HEAVEN'S GATE

I don't remember the writer.
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post #5 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ebonyisforme View Post
My Grandest Foal
I'LL LEND YOU FOR A LITTLE WHILE
MY GRANDEST FOAL, HE SAID.
FOR YOU TO LOVE WHILE SHE'S ALIVE
AND MORN FOR WHEN SHE'S DEAD.
IT MAY BE ONE OR TWENTY YEARS,
OR DAYS OR MONTHS, YOU SEE.
BUT, WILL YOU, TILL I TAKE HER BACK,
TAKE CARE OF HER FOR ME?
SHE'LL BRING HER CHARMS TO GLADDEN YOU,
AND SHOULD HER STAY BE BRIEF,
YOU'LL HAVE TREASURED MEMORIES
AS SOLACE FOR YOUR GRIEF.
I CANNOT PROMISE SHE'LL STAY,
SINCE ALL FROM EARTH RETURN.
BUT, THERE ARE LESSONS TAUGHT ON EARTH
I WANT THIS FOAL TO LEARN.
I'VE LOOKED THE WIDE WORLD OVER
IN MY SEARCH FOR TEACHERS TRUE.
AND FROM THE THRONGS THAT CROWD LIFE'S LANES,
WITH TRUST, I HAVE SELECTED YOU.
NOW WILL YOU GIVE HER YOUR TOTAL LOVE?
NOR THINK THE LABOR VAIN,
NOR HATE ME WHEN I COME
TO TAKE HER BACK AGAIN?
I KNOW YOU'LL GIVE HER TENDERNESS
AND LOVE WILL BLOOM EACH DAY.
AND FOR THE HAPPINESS YOU'VE KNOWN!
FOREVER GRATEFUL STAY.
BUT SHOULD I COME AND CALL FOR HER
MUCH SOON THAN YOU PLANNED
YOU'LL BRAVE THE BITTER GRIEF THAT COMES
AND SOMEDAY YOU'LL UNDERSTAND.
FOR THOUGH I'LL CALL HER HOME TO ME
THIS PROMISE TO YOU I DO MAKE,
FOR ALL THE LOVE AND CARE YOU GAVE
SHE'LL WAIT FOR YOU, INSIDE HEAVEN'S GATE
.
Well crap. Now I'm crying. That is a great poem.
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post #6 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 03:38 PM
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My husband suddenly lost his horse in July while we were finishing up a trail ride. The barn was in sight and his horse just collapsed with hubby in the saddle.
The horse landed with his neck twisted 180 degrees. The vet had to come out and put him down and said he was pretty sure it was a heart attack or stroke that caused the collapse.

My husband had never allowed himself to think about this horse passing on and it came as quite the shock to him.

Everyone has different ways of grieving, but what worked for us was talking about this horse any chance we had. We looked at pictures, we told stories about his antics, and we tried to think about how lucky we had been to have him in our lives.

It hurt sooooo bad the first weeks. It physically hurt. But things started to get better and the smiles came more often than the tears when thinking or talking about him.

On July 13, we both felt as if our hearts would never heal, but humans are capable of healing and it does get easier. I promise.

I am sorry for your loss.
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post #7 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 04:03 PM
Green Broke
 
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Location: Maine
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I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my heart horse a couple of years ago. I contemplated giving up horses completely as my heart was no longer in it. I still had her last foal, Walka, but he wasn't her. I even told my husband "why couldn't it be Walka!". So, yes, I was heartbroken.

I allowed myself to grieve for my girl. And then I went through the motions with Walka, until I starting feeling again. Looking forward to working on something with the old boy! I also started taking riding lessons from a trainer I greatly respect.

Then along came a little mare that needed to be re-homed. Not an abuse or even neglect case. The owner just never bonded with her and was a bit intimidated by her.

My giggle came back with that little firecracker. Exposing her to the world (she had been kept in a bubble, not even allowed to graze with the owners other horse or have physical contact) has given a freshness to my riding.

Here"s an interesting bit of information. While I mourned my beloved horse T, I would continuously say "I miss T" to my husband while crying. He observed a little while ago that my new mares name is Misty (miss-tee). Made me smile and realize Misty is where she was meant to be.

Give yourself time. There is no set time to "get over" any loss.
Wallaby, dlady, JCnGrace and 2 others like this.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the devil says, "Oh crap, she's up!".
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post #8 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 04:10 PM
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I would just like to wish you some love and light at this time. When we leave here for the spirit world, life does go on in another form. Your horse will still be around you for a while to help.
Talk to your close friends and family about your horse and the good times you had, and the times that your horse tested you.............horses know who loves them
Grief is the price we pay for love, it is the cost of commitment.
One of my favourite poems is below. Tell us how you are doing and show us some pictures of your horse.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

What I know about horses would fill a book, and what I don't know would fill a library..............
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post #9 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 05:08 PM
Weanling
 
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"Grief is the price we pay for love..."

You have my heartfelt sympathy for your loss.

Cherish the good memories. Let the tears flow.

It took 15 years before I could face my first horse's "death anniversary" and not dissolve into a puddle of inconsolable sadness.
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post #10 of 25 Old 01-28-2015, 09:48 PM
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Posts: 4,222
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My sister has lost several horses in her life. She always clips some of the mane/tail of lost animals and gives some to a lady who mixes it with clay and then sculpts a small horse head about the size of a chess piece. Each is unique and is inscribed with the horse's name, date of birth (if known) and last day.

These little horses line one of her shelves to remind her that they were her friends and companions. It doesn't stop the grieving, but it does seem to help having a wee bit of them as reminders.

OldFriends.jpg

EDIT: Just talked to my sister - I made an error above. The bits are mixed with the glaze, applied and fired.
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