Farewell My Friend

Yesterday was a tough day. It was my last day with Bubbles before I leave for Australia. I decided to finish the loan early then in my last week or so I could spend time with friends and family.

Going for a sunrise hack has always been on my bucket list. Just imaging sitting on your horse as the sun is rising, it just sounds so peaceful to me. So that is how I wanted to spend my last morning with Bubbles. I set my alarm at 5:00am and went down to the yard. I had the whole yard to myself. Bubbles was already wide awake when I got there so I groomed him and tacked him up. My mum knew it was my last day with him, so she came down in the morning and walked with us as we went on our hack. She’s my photographer basically. As we were walking along there was not a soul in sight. Everywhere was calm and quiet. We arrived at Green Hill which is surprisingly a grassy hill with a field at the bottom. It’s the perfect place to do hill work, outdoor schooling, ditch hopping and if you want a good canter/gallop. Bubbles loves it there so I thought it would be the perfect place to go. The morning was cloudy and a bit drizzly so sadly we didn’t see the sunrise but in the end that didn’t matter. It was a beautiful morning spent with a beautiful horse.

After our photo shoot my mum walked back to her car so I could spend the rest of the morning alone with Bubbles. I didn’t cry. I got teary at the thought of saying bye to him in the evening but I was okay. After being out for about an hour and a half we arrived back at the yard. I mucked out his stable, un tacked him and gave him a groom before turning him out in the field for the day. I still hadn’t cried by this point. I collected what I needed and went to my car. I reversed, and drove about 30 seconds up the farm lane. As I was belting out this massive tune (Macy Gray – I Try) I burst into tears. Proper tears. They were sad tears and it all hit me then. I’ve known the 22nd was my last day with him for weeks now but I’ve always avoided thinking about it. If the thought popped into my head I would get teary but I’d quickly change the subject. It all hit me on my drive home. So I took the extended route home to give myself a bit more time to calm down. So I’m driving around, red-faced, red eyes, smudged make up but I was still trying to belt out those massive tunes like nothing was wrong. I arrived home and thankfully everyone was in bed, so I had my bowl of cereal with Barney then he joined me for a nap.

The rest of the day was spent in bed reminiscing about the good times with Bubbles. I found old pictures and videos that melted my heart. He is someone who gave me a reason and a purpose to get out of bed when it felt like the hardest task to do. He needed me to feed him, to muck him out and to groom him. I needed him to help keep me going. He reminded me of who I truly am. I am a crazy horse girl. Always have been and always will be. He reminded me that I wasn’t built for office life. I was built for getting my hands dirty, smelling like shit and for looking after those who don’t have a voice. He became a member of our family and joined our friendship circles. He was someone friends and family talked about when I wasn’t there. In my first few months of counselling (when I was still working) my counselling sessions would be at 5:30pm so I would leave work at 5:00pm and go straight to my sessions. When I finished work my sessions moved to 10:30am. Once my sessions were over I would go down to the yard so I could feed and muck out Bubbles. He was there after those tough sessions. I could be quiet around, I could cry or I could aggressively empty his haynet on the floor. Either way he never questioned me. He always knew when something was wrong and he would become more needy and loving. He just knew.

When the evening arrived I went down to the yard and brought him in from the field. I tried to leave it as late as I could to avoid the yard being busy as I knew I would an emotional wreck. I went to the field and I had a little cry but nothing that I couldn’t control. I went there with two slices of apple (his favourite) and we slowly walked in. He was covered in mud so I gave him a pamper session. As I was grooming him I lost all control and burst into tears. The thought of saying bye to him and him not even knowing/understanding why I am leaving was heart breaking and it got to me. I collected myself and told him, right I’ll wait till everyone has gone, then I will cry. I made up his bed, put some fresh straw in for him, cleaned his water buckets and got him a fully packed haynet. By this point everyone had left so I untied Bubbles and put him in his stable. I took his head collar off and gave him a pat and then I started to cry. Like proper cry. This was uncontrollable. I wanted to try to make the evening as normal as possible. I didn’t want him to sense that anything was wrong, so I walked across the yard with tears streaming down my face and I went to make his tea. Still crying, I cut up some more apples and add them to his feed. At this point I am now thinking “This is the last time I’m gonna do this” so I started crying some more. As I walk around the corner I hear him nicker. He always knows when tea time is. I put him bowl in his stable and I stand next to him whilst he tucks in. Still balling my eyes out I rest my head on his shoulder and give him a pat. I know I’m better leaving now rather than dragging it out. I say to him “Thank you” and I walk out of his stable. Close the door behind me and he looks up. I give him a little wave and I walk off. I gather up the rest of my belongings and head back to my car. I sit in my car for a while whilst I compose myself. Afterwards I was alright. I didn’t cry again till this very minute as I sit here typing this. I don’t even know how to put into words how amazing and special this horse is. He was a horse that spontaneously came into my life and he rescued me. He rescued my soul and helped me listen to it. I’m forever going to be grateful for him. He’s given me the courage to take this next step in my life and move to Australia to work with horses there. I love him dearly with all of my heart.

To Bubbles, a one in a million horse.

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I love you lots,

Emma xo

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