The reality is, Chester, is not any better then he was a month ago when I started to ride him again. Any hope that I had that he was on his way to getting better was crushed this afternoon when I got the following txt from BO: Hello. Was Chester normal today? He seems worse to us when he came in for dinner.
WHAT?! What do you mean worse?! Today, I did some trotting up and down our tractor path, but he didn't feel any worse then he did yesterday. In the past month, he has gotten a little better each day...but he still isn't 100%, he still shuffles in front and going around corners feels considerably worse then when we are going straight. There is no head bobbing when we ride, simply shuffling in front.
Of course - I go over to the barn...and he is eating away in his stall. As I pull him out, I do a quick once over: standing on all four feet, no heat, no swelling, no sensitivity to his back/withers...and I stare at him. We stick him on the lunge line and he is moving considerably worse then I have seen him in the past month...shuffling in front. We flex him...and he doesn't come up head bobbing lame, but he does shuffle. Which in any normal case would seem odd, but this has been Chester for the past...well, since the winter. We turn him in a small circle to the left and he crosses his back legs fine. When we turn him to the right, he doesn't want to cross his hind right over his left and he bobs. Fan Friggin Tastic.
I don't know what to do anymore. There is something still wrong with him and I have no idea what that could be. Could his stifle be the reason he is shuffling in front? That doesn't make any sense to me. This whole situation honestly makes me want to cry. know he isn't right and I know there is something - probably pretty serious - that is going on inside him somewhere. If he was okay, then after almost a month of riding, he would have been well on his way to being okay. THAT is realistic. My gut is yelling at me that something is wrong.
There isn't much I can do about it today other then worry myself sick, so I am going to try to not do that. (hahahahaha - I'm borderline in tears writing this) In the morning, I am going to call DVME and bring her up to speed on what is going on. I am going to have her boss come out and do diagnostic imaging...because then we will know for sure what the problem is. Can I afford it? Nope, not at all. Can I afford NOT to do it? Nope, not at all.
What makes me most upset about this...is just how upset I am! I feel selfish for feeling this way. Why? Because I still have him...and there are people out there, who probably right now, are going through much much worse then I am with the partners they hold so dear to them.
I think it is hard for me because I feel deep down in my gut that this is something that isn't going to go away over night. I think it is hard for me because right now, Chester is the only thing I have that makes me want to get up and get through another day. If it wasn't for him - I don't know what I would be doing with myself. I wish wish wish I could go back in time and have decided NOT to ride on December 30th. Because maybe then, I wouldn't be sitting here thinking how much reality needs to suck it. I wish that I would have spoken up when his x-rays were clean. I wish I would have asked more questions when it wasn't making sense....there are so many things I would have done differently.
I HATE sounding so pessimistic, please believe me...but I know this is going to be a battle. More then likely a tough one. I can feel it. What I hate MOST I think, is that Chester deserves more then any other horse I know, to be great. To be a champion. He tries so hard for me and he is so deserving of being good at what he does. The thought of him not being able to do what he is good at, what he loves, breaks my heart more then anything else.
Let's hope for the best of a bad situation.