Amidst all of the over the top good news I have had these last few days...
I have made the decision to take Queen home and put her to sleep. Not the end result I was hoping for when I so blissfully loaded her up at the ranch and hauled her to Colorado with me.
I wasn't exactly blind to how I thought things would start off with her...she earned her reputation. But, I really thought that she would settle back into being a respectable saddle horse after her initial I-am-a-rank-bronc persona got smoothed out.
She has had plenty of time to come off of the "sugar rush"(as someone described it in the comments) of eating the feeder cattle's grain. And she still wants to be a rank be-otch.
To make matters worse-she has become nearly impossible to catch and is making Frosty charge around like an idiot whenever I go to the pen to catch one of them. Moon, who has always been a bit difficult to catch is the only one who doesn't run around like an idiot.
I can't have it...I won't have it. To let a super sweet and people loving horse like Frosty get turned into an idiot because his mother is? I don't think so!
She was saddling pretty decently for a few days there. I ponied her, moved her around and stepped up and down in the stirrup. The last day I did that, she absolutely lost her mind and blew up.
I stood there and watched her and decided right at that moment that it is not worth getting hurt trying to ride this mare. I finally have my barrel horse back. Frosty is showing great potential to be a super nice horse and may even make a good barrel horse. And I don't think I...at nearly 40 years old...have to prove that I can do something that I probably shouldn't have wasted my time on when I was in my 20's?!
Short of good horses with great minds and great potential I am not. Why risk everything on one old(er) mare who has been a raging beast her entire life?
Don't get me wrong. I feel really badly about this decision. I have loved this mare from the moment I set eyes on her as a newborn foal. It feels like a rotten thing to do actually. She is only 16 and in very good health. So why not just take her back to the ranch and let her live out the rest of her life?
Well, because at some point...I will have to put her to sleep. Whether that is 10 years down the road or next week. That will be the end result for her. So why let her stand there and eat 10 years worth of grass, knowing that she will never be ridden, never have a baby and most likely never be caught again? It doesn't make any sense to wait. At least not to me.
Somewhere along the line, this "horse" thing has to make at least a little sense right?
I don't raise horses as an investment. I don't ever really expect to make any money on horses. I have them because I cannot imagine my life without them. I have them because I love to think about them, look at them, touch them and smell them. But being a selfish human, I do expect a little bit in return. I expect to be able to handle them without unnecessary uncertainty and I expect to be able to at least ride them without unnecessary fear of injury or death. I figure if I can't do it...I sure as heck don't think anyone else is going to want to try either.
So tomorrow, with a heavy heart and a firm decision...I'll load my beautiful, crazy girl up and haul her home for the final time. The least I can do for her is to lay her to rest on the ranch where she was born and spent a good majority of her life. Actually, it's the best I can hope to do for any of my horses when their time comes.