Thursday, January 24, 2008

I Don't Want To But......

I was getting ready for bed last night when I began worrying about my horses. They weren’t wearing their blankets because it had been in the upper 30’s during the day. When I fed them and put them in the barn for the night, it was still 28 degrees. In fact, as I took off my boots and socks and tucked my daughter into her bed, the temperature was the same as it was earlier even though the forecast said it would go down to 20 degrees. I hoped they wouldn't be too cold. Man, I did not want to go out there. I just wanted to crawl under the covers.

My rule is that I put the blankets on the girls when it is below 20. Even so, I waffled aloud for about a half an hour about whether I should drag myself back outdoors. Finally, my husband offered, “Let’s just do it.” He helped me carry the blankets across the yard from the tack room, which is next to our garage. We lit up the barn, waking Silk and Siete. They weren’t pleased. After the deed was done, they each got an extra flake of hay which definitely placated them.

This morning, the first thing I did was check the temperature. It was 12 degrees, and I was so relieved that I had forced myself to go out in the cold and the dark last night to take care of them. Having the horses at home allows me to do something like this.

More important, forcing myself to think about the horses instead of doing what was most comfortable and easiest for me is like exercising a muscle. As I got through my day, there will be things I just don’t feel like doing. I don’t want to revise a proposal that I’m writing. I don’t want to take my mom to the doctor while she protests non-stop that she doesn’t want to go even though we both know it’s what’s best for her. I don’t want to help my daughter study for her science test as she complains that she can’t do it. I don’t want to cook dinner just as I get the momentum to finally re-write the dreaded proposal. At each moment of “I don’t want to”, I will remind myself of how I felt at 5 am this morning.

24 comments:

billie said...

Yesterday was one of those days for me as well. I had a ride on the 4-year old, Cody, and helped my daughter with her ride on the pony.

The equine chiropractor came, and I had to get two horses cleaned up for their adjustments. Keil Bay was really out of whack, so it was worth it to see him bob his head until she got to the right spots and adjusted them.

But after all the above, there were still so many chores to do. Mucking two paddocks and 4 stalls, making sure the horse blankets stayed in the moving sunlight so they'd be sure to dry by nightfall, cleaning and filling water buckets.

I barely finished by dark, and then had to run to my office to see several clients.

There are always those chores that have to be done, and like you, I always feel better that I've done them, especially when I think back to when we boarded and how I fretted over things I had no real control over. It's so nice being able to glance at the weather station and know the temp at the barn - and to be able to walk out the back door and put blankets on if needed. (or take them off, which occasionally happens when it suddenly warms up)

Hope your day is good today - we're shrouded in fog and the geldings are running like mad men out there. Salina, the mare, is looking over the gate into our back window, as if she's saying "could you go out there and make them stop that?"

Funny girl.

Callie said...

Yeah, I'm looking at a slightly messy house that's needs a good tidy. Thankfully, I did get out there yesterday to top off water for the horses and the goats. I knew I needed to do it yesterday as it was going to drop in temp below zero again today. The water process is hard enough when it's not below zero. Glad I did it when I planned.

gilly said...

hi ive just found your blog im a blogger from england. i enjoyed reading about your life and horses. ive m.e. and am confined to the home. so love reading about others lives it takes me out of the house without leaving home.. im new to computers ..gilly

Anonymous said...

Hey! Lovely blog! Gorgeous horses.

Amanda said...

You are such a good mommy to those horses (and your daughter of course), for taking care of them even if it means making your self uncomfortable, even for just a few minutes. I'm sure they really apprciated being covered, even if it did wake them up.

The Giraffe Head Tree said...

Great story, and wonderful lesson for us all. That reminds me - I've got to go compile my Master Gardener's hours, which I HATE to do. If you can do it, I can do it!

Grey Horse Matters said...

Our horses get a night check every night between 9 & 11, sometimes its just too cold or snowing or raining, but it gets done. The worst part I think is getting all the winter gear on to make the walk to the barn, luckily the barn is not too far from the house. It is still a pain in the neck, but when it's done it is a good feeling that they are all tucked in for the night comfy and cozy, it just sets my mind at ease so the inconvenience is probably worth it. Spring shouldn't be too far away, I hope!

Bill Evertson said...

Thanks for the reminder that doing the right thing instead of the comfortable is like exercising a muscle. How quickly we can become de-conditioned if we don't follow through on those sometimes annoying yet
righteous obligations. I went through a difficult time the past six months where I had to devote so much time to my 90 year old mothers problems after a fall that I had no life of my own. My art came to a standstill and my resentment grew until I came to a similar ah ha where it became clear that I just had to weather the storm because it was the right thing. Thanks again for your insight.

Stacks said...

I really understand what you mean. Last night it was -4 F where I live in of all places Arizona. I really wanted to stay in the nice warm covers, but none the less drug myself outside split up a little more wood and stoked up the wood stove. When I woke my kids this morning to get ready for school and they did not complain about being cold and that little thing was worth 30 minutes lost sleep @ 2am.

Our sacfrifice of comfort has small immidiate pay out, however the long lasting effect might be great. My kids will remember when they are parents that their mom got up 2 times a night to make sure they were warm all night so they had a good night's rest. That she took a chainsaw out on the weekends to make sure there was enough wood for the winter. Then they will have the integrity and thoughtfulness we hope our children to have as adults.

Victoria Cummings said...

Billie and Callie -Glad you know what I'm talking about.

Gilly -Thanks for coming by - Please stop in and see me often.

Cymon said...

Your thoughts about getting up and going outside to put blankets on your horses reminded that a couple days my wife and I had the same conversation except it was about covering up our plants outside. They get cold too. I also want to let you know that I have added your blog URL to my blog's 'Blogs of Note'. http://cymonsplace.blogspot.com Nice blog and good luck,
Cymon AKA Gary

shepherdgirl said...

Wow, I'm so glad I found this blog. I am an artist and my husband and I moved to our farm in 2004 - I had been dreaming of my own horse since I was born [literally] and at age 44, got one. But the wrong one. Three horses later, I have my chestnut gelding Boone, and I too made so many mistakes, still do - No one suffered from them but me, but, I am constantly learning from our animals. I will be back. And will read past posts.

Heidi the Hick said...

I grew up with my ponies and horses in my backyard, but for over a decade they've been an hour away from me (in the same backyard- it's me that left!)

I often fear that all this townie life has made me soft and that I'll whine when I have to go out in the dead of winter to do morning chores...in the future when I get my own place big enough for my horses to live with me.

When I worry, I remind myself of two things:

I'm up walking the dog every day anyways...

When I'm staying at the farm and have to drag myself out to the barn first thing in the morning, I am cold and sleepyheaded and miserable. But then! I open the barn door and there's the face of my beautiful horse. He's happy to see me because I'll let him out and give him hay.

I will never ever get tired of that.

David Crofts Munro said...

Nothing profound to add. My first visit to your blog has been a pleasent one. I hope to stop by again soon. -Much inspiration to be had here.

Cheers.

Raven said...

I'm so glad that there are "posts of note." I was creating a blog for my leadership class at work and got totally engaged in reading your blog....way cool. I'll be back.

Kimmie Kay said...

I think we all have those days Victoria! I often feel like that at night when everyone is tucked in and I have done everything I didn't want to do and get some "me" time before bed. Your precious horses are blessed to have you, they are beautiful!

Anonymous said...

I always wanted a horse,.... my dad had about 10.... good old days! love your story

spiceygirl said...

I had to laugh as i read your blog, my aunt & i just had that discussion tonight, as the temp's are supposed to be about 5 degrees here!!! tucking horses into bed, cozy in their blankets, in the dead of night, cold winter nights, all sounds so familiar!! i'm really new to this blog thing, i just made ours tonight, i think i'm going to create on just for the horsies! would love to get to know you, from the sounds of your blogs, we have a lot in common! i'm gonna try to get some pics of my babies on their tonight, then it's off to bed! you can blog me back sometime if you want, or email me @ spicey772005@yahoo.com, i love to meet new horsie friends on here, i have a myspace as well, w/ lots of horse & family pics....spiceygirl77, hope to hear from you!! thx, Suzanne

Flanboyant Eats said...

Hi! I found you while perusing someone else's site! I've always always wanted to own a horse but living in DC and now Atlanta makes it difficult to care for them. They are lovely--yours that is :)

And then I see you may like black beans and plantains?? I'd love for you to visit my food blog and try my black bean recipe. You just might fall in love with it... :)

A hug to the girls (horses) :) I'll be back to visit your site.

B-

anneredlips said...

its shows you love for your horse

Random Chick said...

is that twenty degrees celsius or fahrenheit?

Gypsy at Heart said...

What a nice husband you have Victoria. I love it that he gave you the impetus you needed. Thank goodness you put on the blankets!

TCavanaugh said...

I love your blog and am a horse lover myself. Thank you for your interesting posts regarding your best friends.

I agree that it feels much better when I don't procrastinate and get the work done!

Rising Rainbow said...

I know exactly what you mean. There are those things in caring for horses that you think, Man do I have to .....but yoou are always so glad when you do.

I keep trying to teach my granddaughter that lesson. Any you're going to really want in life is going to have a down side to it to, you just have to be prepared to deal with both if you are ever going to be happy.