Thursday, November 15, 2007

Fawtal, my best guy...

Well, I haven't talked about this to anyone, but November 10th, 2007, Fawtal, my best horse ever, has been gone a year. A year ago last Saturday, I found him dead in his stall. It was like losing a family member. I can't believe it has already been a year.

November 10th, 2006, a Friday. I go out to my barn which is 5 miles from my house, at 5:30 am to feed Fawtal and Summer their breakfast. I walk in the barn and notice something odd, Fawtal is not looking at me, he is not even standing up. I walk to his stall and saw him laying there. He has probably been gone for about 4 hours.

I lost it. I absolutely lost it. I was screaming and crying, hitting the walls of the barn. He was my first horse. He had been in our family for 15 years. I called my friends, Mark and Liz, and my husband David. Liz came straight out, Mark was out of town so called his wife Melinda, another dear friend of mine. He had her bring me a huge tarp to cover Fawtal up with. David took off work and our daughter, Amanda, was 15 at the time, took off school. She was devastated. She had never known life without that horse.

I was blessed that this day was my payday. I had Pine Hill Pet and Horse Cemetary come and get him. I paid for a private burial. He is in Bowie, TX with his own grave marker. It is a very nice place.

When they showed up about 3:30pm to pick him up, I was told that I might not want to be there when they got him out of his stall. I knew what that meant. That they may have had to break his legs to get him out. David would not allow that. David is not a horse person by any means, but he knows what my babies mean to me. He and another boarder, Ron, took the stall apart. They took down an entire wall so that Fawtal's body would not be harmed. The guy who came for him was so gentle and so nice. He treated me like this was a family member he was taking away. He was gentle with me and seemed sincerely sorry for my loss.

Well, we left for a couple of hours after he left with Fawtal. My daughter and I went back out that evening to take care of Summer. I knew I had to clean Fawtal's stall, but was going to wait till the next day. I didn't know if I could handle doing it that day. When we got back to the barn, I couldn't help but go to his stall. The stall wall had been put back up and the stall had been completely stripped and cleaned out! I couldn't imagine who was so thoughtful enough to do this for me. Don't get me wrong, we have some great boarders, but who did this for me so I wouldn't have to? I found out the next day it was Julie and Ron. Ron had put the wall back up and he and Julie stripped it for me. So the next day, I brought photos of all the years I had Fawtal, and all his ribbons from shows in California and a wreath. I made him a memorial and left it in his stall for 3 days.

Fawtal was a handsome 15.1 grey Arabian gelding. He was retired due to arthritus in his shoulder, he was 24.

Fawtal now waits for me at the rainbow bridge, running with the Lord's herd.

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