I am so sorry to hear about your mother. Mine has stage 4 CTCL and every time I see her she is getting weaker. Cost has been an issue because of changes in insurance and her age. There is still quite a bit of fight left and that seems to be what is keeping her going. Horses are my sanity. Have been for a long time. There is just something about being around them that makes the world right again.
The thing was, last year, she'd come down with a serious (is there any other kind?) episode of MRSA-pneumonia, which they felt - if not immediately fatal, she was too weakened to recover fully. So she was on hospice from about April/May last year to March of this year and they took her off because she, well, wasn't dead. Then June rolled around and mom had been questioning the wisdom of going back on chemo because she was miserable and in pain anyway, and then her oncologist said 'well, you're right, it's not going to do anything' and gave her 'two weeks to two months'. She was weakened but still talking and cognizant up til the 10th, and then I left overnight for some friends and when I came back she'd taken a sharp decline to sort of delirious, and then to semi-comatose, and then, well, dead. It's funny, it's still not quite settling in as a real thing, even though (with the wait for hospice, and the wait for the funeral people) we sat with her body for a good three hours. It's not as if I don't know she's dead, but some things are just reflex.
So I went to the quarter horse show. It was just the tail end of it, but I went out early on Sunday to see the trail classes and the pole bending and barrel racing. Absolute torrential downpours on the way out - the trail classes were in the indoor arena, so they were all ok, but the pole bending/barrel racing was in an outdoor ring. Fortunately by the time they started, the rain had stopped and it was muddy but passable (that crushed-slate footing). The trail classes were interesting to watch, but some of the horses had their heads way down and looked uncomfortable when they moved (I know it's meant to be slow and casual, but some of them if you didn't know they looked like they were limping). But some of them were lovely to watch all the same. Lots of beautiful horses - a lot of chestnuts, some palomino, some bay, a few white horses, a few red roans. Do quarter horses not typically have pinto patterned coats? I didn't see any at all. (Toby is rumored to be quarter horse, though god only knows his heritage, and he's - I guess it's a tobiano pattern. Funny, Toby, tobiano.) Some of them seemed to have almost arab-looking faces.
I liked the pole bending better less because of the excitement factor and more because there were more novices/kids who were clearly boldly trying something new and different, so it was a lot of fun to watch. One girl was riding a mare that I might delicately describe as "spicy" (she reminded me of Baby, at the barn, who walks like she's shopping Fifth Avenue and has very strongly defined personal space re: other horses). Beautiful horse, but a lot of horse, I was impressed with her control.
Biding time til Friday, once again.