Thursday, July 19, 2007
The Story of Luther
When my son was small he kept growing excessively, and this threw off his balance and coordination. ( Hey - we don't call him 6-6 for nothing....)So this required that he have physical therapy, and speech therapy,occupational therapy, and swimming everyday, and even therapuetic riding. Now we were not rich parents, so this was not something that we had budgeted for when he was a baby. Nurses and teachers don't make alot of money. So my Ex worked alot of overtime and the Enigma fought with the Insurance companies and tried to get things paid for. And we found ways to get the Son what he needed. So there I was in my late 30's negogiating with a Riding Program, offering to clean stalls and take care of horses so he could get the Riding lessons he so badly needed, that helped his balance and coordination. The Horses gave him confidence and touched him in a magical way.
So I learned how to care for the horses, every weekend for a couple of years, I cleaned and cared for 20 horses. I fed them what they needed, gave them pasture time, watered, brushed and yes, even cleaned out their stalls. I learned about laminititis, shoe-ing, and what they could and could not eat. Some were retired Race Horses, and a bit highstrung. So I took courses on Tellington Touch and Massage and learned that these beautiful Creatures were smarter than I and more communicative than most knew.
My Son fell in love with them all, one by one, and he knew what they ate and Who got along with Who. ( This was critical when putting horses in fields.). He was 7 and he knew that sometimes they needed to play and he also knew that if we put Chantilly in the one field she would eat too many apples, but it would make her happy. He loved the one big old Black Morgan named Luther. Luther was a big easygoing fellow, and he was not doing well with the riding program because he himself was having coordination problems. My son had great compassion for Luther, because they were bonded on this issue. And in a funny way, my son knew that something was making this problem worse for Luther. And lo and behold he figured it out. One day putting Luther in the field, my son of 7 said, "Ya know , he likes this field, but it's not the plum trees or the apple tree, it 's those plants down by the fence, the onces with the berries. Are you sure he can or should be eating those? " I was struck by this, and sat down with my son and watched Luther, and sure enough he beelined for the plants with the berries....And over the weekend, my son was right Luther's co-ordination was definently worse in the evening.
So that weekend we did alot of research and found the Luther Plant in a book, it was Nightshade, and it was indeed poisonous, and could indeed cause Major Coordination issues. So we talked to the Managers and the owners and the Vet, and what was figured out that Luther was going to need PT and OT and lots of care, and to move to another barn and be watched and cared for, and Time to get better. We mentioned to the Vet that ended up adopting Luther that we had been to see the Seattle Police Horses in their barn, on a field trip and that they got beautiful care, and she was intrigued with that idea.And she found a home for him with the Seattle Police Horses. So Luther ended up getting the care he needed ,and he got better and he also ended up being a Police Horse with his gentle unflappable disposition.Everytime I see a program on Police Horses I think of this gentle Morgan with the Brown soulful eyes that touched my son's life.
My son did a Good Thing that summer....he may not remember it. But I always will.