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Among The Stars - Part 8 of 8
 By Polo the Weirdo   •   24th Mar 2019   •   792 views   •   1 comments
Among The Stars

I wish I could say Ďtime healsí, but it doesnít. I still miss him every day. I still cry every time I look at his photos. Some days Iíll wake up and simply canít face a world without him in it. I canít leave my bed, because, whatís the point? But you donít get to just lie in bed and hate your empty world forever. Itís like weíre allocated Ďmorbidity leaveí, and then once itís over, we lose permission to feel. I donít get to say ĎIím not going to work today because I miss my pet who died half a year agoí - but there are days, so many days, even this far along, that the feeling of grief and loss is still more draining, more paralysing, than any cold or flu or legitimate ailment that excuses you from behaving like a fully-functioning human being. And I want to talk about that.

I want to talk about the days you get on another horse and get off 10 minutes later in tears because it reminds you of your Moo, but itís not the same. I want to talk about the reminders you set on your calendar for shows you were planning to enter, which you canít go to now, because your horse is gone. About your fellow competitors on social media moving up grades. Winning shows you wanted to go to. Getting selected for teams you wanted to campaign for, while youíre left far behind, trying to scrounge whatís left of your will to carry on from the ashes of your career. Losing Moo wasnít losing a pet that leaves an eternal hole in your life. Losing Moo wasnít losing 8 years of work toward my goals. Losing Moo wasnít losing all my progress in my career.

It wasnít losing my one immediate - maybe only - shot at my dreams.

It wasnít losing a perfect riding partner who brings me joy and inspiration. It was losing all of these things. Suddenly. Shockingly. Horribly. All at once. A horse is never Ďjust a horseí. A horse can represent so many different things with so many different values to each individual person. It can be a friend, a dream, a livelihood. You can build entire lives, communities and relationships around a horse. Thatís what ĎTeam Mooí meant. Losing him hurt so many people in so many different ways, because of what he represented.

When I first lost him, one of my friends asked, ďWhat are you going to write about now?Ē

And there it is, right? That about sums it up. He was my inspiration - the foundation my world was built on. Without seeing what funny thing Moo gets up to today, what do I write about? Without Moo to ride, how do I get to those big shows, or train those advanced movements? I can ride other horses. I can write about other things. And from the outside, my life looks like itís going on the same to other people. But on the inside? Everything is a substitution. I feel like Iím piecing a broken life together with pieces from the wrong puzzles. So here is my public announcement. Iím not doing okay. Yes, even this long after it happened, Iím not. I wonít be for a while, and I donít want to be. I lost my everything, and I miss him. And there are going to be days that I just want the rest of the world to stop, like mine has. Itís taken me almost a year to write this. To be brave enough to submit it. To full admit to myself that heís gone, and my life has to go on now without him in it.

Losing a horse - or anyone - isnít a beautiful story or life lesson full of healing and wisdom. Itís ugly, painful and messy. Itís full of anger and resentment. Itís sobbing into your pillow over how unfair it is that other people are moving forward with their careers while yours has been reset from the start. Itís feeling useless every time you get on another horse because you just donít want to Ďtryí any more, and hating yourself for it. Itís staring at your boots every morning for ten minutes before putting them on, thinking, Ďshould I just give upí, and then carrying on without ever deciding on the answer. Itís not Ďhealingí; itís coping - barely. Itís not Ďfeeling betterí, itís shutting up about your feelings when they are no longer fresh enough to be appropriate. Not Ďlearningí, but grasping at the faintest hint of anything positive to help you fight through each day of a life that a huge part of you no longer sees the point in.

Iím not okay, and I donít know if I will be. And I donít have anything uplifting to say to end this unpleasant and unpopular Ďloss storyí. I just want to say that if there are people out there who understand - not in the polite and socially acceptable sense - but in the same raw, ugly, depressed battle of a way that Iíve described here, I hope that you get some comfort from the solidarity of knowing that I feel the same way. Of knowing that I see you. That I acknowledge your pain. That itís okay for loss to be ugly, and not graceful, and itís normal for you to not be okay. And if even one person reads this, and reads it all the way to the end, and finishes it thinking, ĎWow, that Moo must have been a seriously special horse to have had this kind of impactí, then youíre damn right, Friend. And I wish you could have met him. Maybe he never did get the chance to become a legend, but he was one to me. And to honour his legacy, Iím going to keep on keeping on. Keep riding, even when itís the last thing I want to do. Keep training, even though the goals I once worked towards feel so out of reach.

Thank you for everything, Moo. Iím starting over without you now, but I hope that with everything you taught me, one day Iíll still manage to reach the goals we set together. I promise, for you, Iím going to keep on trying.

Among The Stars


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Deep Oak Trails  
Polo, I returned to ponybox and saw this article by you. Read all 8 parts. I am so sorry for your loss. It is tragic, and the pain must be terrible. I remember thinking what a beauty Moony was, and that special connection you had was admirable. I too have had to deal with the loss of a horse who meant the world to me and helped me be who I am, a different connection to that you had but I relate to to that feeling of pain.

"And to honour his legacy, Iím going to keep on keeping on. Keep riding, even when itís the last thing I want to do. Keep training, even though the goals I once worked towards feel so out of reach."

Whats more to that is you mentioned how that connection meant he seemed to know what you want. For him, the journey and bond you shared was just as real. I'm sure he would want you to continue for your sake (in a way a horse would think such thoughts) and see that what he taught you you could bring forward to others. Very much his legacy lives on, and it lives on thr
  Apr 6, 2019  •  371 views
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