I have been having trouble lately, but don't tell anyone, especially the wolves. The whole world has been kind of slanted, and sometimes I slant with it, and sometimes I have to scramble for it to straighten out. Mother has been giving me lots of cookies and extra attention, and has had the vet come out to see me several times, and given me shots. But nothing fixes this.
It is very depressing. I would look to Mother for help, and all she had to offer was cookies.
Then, Mother lead me out to the back field, and Aunt Nancy came along with us. It seemed a strange place for an exam, but sometimes in the past Mother had me trot in hand for the doctor... with so much grass out here, maybe she needed me to demonstrate my eating!
She gave me a shot, which I thought was like normal sedation (which, I must be honest, I really like), but I found myself feeling really woozy instead, like the times when I had surgery.
The next thing I knew, I was dreaming. I don't remember dreaming with my other surgeries, but it must have been a dream because I was drifting above Mother and Aunt Nancy and a very handsome grey horse which I realized looked an awful lot like me. Mother was leaning over the grey horse and I saw she was crying as she ran her hands over his body, and gentle touches around his face.
When I woke up I found myself in a large and beautiful field that stretched as far as I could see, filled with many horses. There was a lovely flowing stream so clear you could see the pebbled bottom. I looked at all the horses around me in the field; some were frolicking, some grazing, some rolling in the grass, while a few dozed quietly in the shade of a large oak tree. To my surprise, I knew many of these horses, and I saw my own father, and other horses I had known but hadn't seen in a very long time, and some I don't remember having met but who I seemed to simply know, if you know what I mean.
Every horse was at their most beautiful. Perfectly muscled, perfect feet, nobody seemed lame or even old. I noticed that my leg, which had been bothering me so, was as perfect as if I was a young horse. I couldn't help but run, leap, and buck, reveling in my strength again! Whatever Aunt Nancy had done to fix my bad joint, she had done a great job. And nothing about the world was crooked. Everything was straight. I took off galloping and galloping and galloping.
I saw that Spirit Horse was galloping along with me, and I stopped glorying in my ability to just run and run, and started looking around... and I remembered then: MOTHER. Spirit Horse, after all, was who had told me to choose Mother... where was she?
I slowed and started looking around me. Really looking. I noticed something odd about some of my companions in the field. While all were in their prime, fit and strong and seemingly perfect, I saw some were not quite perfect. They were missing chunks of their manes. I asked Spirit Horse why.
He merely turned his great head and gazed at a pretty mare across the meadow who was one of the ones missing mane. I saw a human approach her, the mare nickering delightedly, and the human hugged her around her neck. As the human held up her hand, the mane hair clutched in it touched the horse, and the mare was once again perfect. The human swung up onto the mare's back, and they cantered over the rise and out of sight.
I asked Spirit Horse where my human was. Would Mother come for me like that? He nudged my neck, and I realized I, too was missing some mane hair. Not like when Mother chopped all of it off over a few burrs, but a small swath like the mare whose human came for her. I was filled with happiness, because that means Mother will come for me.
So, it has been some time since I have been in this field, and it is wonderful. There aren't any flies or prickly bushes or burrs or rocks that hurt hooves, just grass and fresh water and ancient shade trees and horses. I spend my days grazing and grooming with friends, galloping and loafing by turns. Everyday is a perfect sunny day, although when I think it has been perhaps too sunny, a cloud will blow across the sun, and even a gentle rain shower may pass when I would just have hoped for one. Everything is so nice, I almost don't remember any other life.
From time to time a human comes, but so far it has not been Mother. There are times though, when my mane is blowing in the breeze and I see the piece missing, and I think of Mother. I know I will see her again, since Spirit Horse promised me. So I am filled with happiness.
And after these times, when I have thought of Mother and go back to my grazing, I always find some Mrs. Pastures cookies, nestled in the grass.