It's me. (Tucker.)
Last week was a lonely week for me. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't all bad. Every day I got turned out with my new buddy Atticus, and the grass is really getting tasty. Everyone at my new farm is really nice to me, especially Auntie Kathleen. I even have a little girl who rides me sometimes, and she and her mom tell me how sweet I am. I like them.
But every night I waited to hear the sound of mom's heels in the aisle, coming to give me a kiss before she goes and changes into the clothes I like better (the ones that are good for riding and smell like me)... but no Mom. I heard the people saying she was sick (I hoped it wasn't colic). I heard the people say something was wrong with my truck (the one that pulls my trailer). Then I heard the people say that one of my mother's humans died, and my heart just broke because I knew Mom really needed me, and without my truck, how would she get here? It was a very bad week for me. I was sick with worry.
When Mom finally did arrive, she found me in my stall and flung her arms around my neck, and started making the saddest sounds, just like little puppies do, and then I realized her face was doing that leaking thing that she only does when she is really sad. She told me it had been the absolute worst week of her life. Maybe she was exaggerating, but I'm sure it must have been awful, having so many bad things happen and no Tucker to make her feel better. So I started nuzzling and grooming and rubbing my face on her and then started searching her pockets and pulling her zippers until she was smiling again. It didn't take long.
The first time she rode me I could tell she was distracted. She was barely even looking where we were going, just staring down at me and giving me half-hearted instructions. I tried to get her to concentrate. I went too slow, I went too fast, and pretty soon she starting to talk to me. Whenever I felt like her mind was wandering back to all those sad things, I'd move my shoulders to the right or move my haunches to the left and before long she was really riding again. By the time we were done all her muscles were still tense but I could see in her face that she felt a little bit better. She'd be good as new in a couple of days.
But the next time she got to the barn, she was even worse. She came to get me in turnout and although she tried to put on a happy face (the sight of me grazing in an emerald green field with the sun shining down on me will make anyone smile), I could tell she was really upset. I kept looking her in the eye all the way to the barn, trying to figure out what was wrong. Finally, she told me we were supposed to go to a clinic with Jeff (Mom and I love Jeff, he is really nice and Mom always rides great after we see him), but we couldn't go because my truck still wasn't working and the time for the clinic had changed and we couldn't get a ride.
I knew what I had to do. I practically dragged her out to the outdoor ring. And from the very first step to the very last one, I was brilliant (if I do say so myself). Whatever she asked me for, I gave her a little more. I pulled out all the stops. I anticipated her every move. I was straight, I was forward, I was relaxed, I was focused. I even gave her the good canter (and that's a lot of work). I've known mom a long time now, and I knew it was the only way I was going to cheer her up.
It worked. After she rode she was in such a good mood that she washed my legs, she organized her trunk, she cleaned my tack, and she pulled my mane (the last part I didn't really enjoy, but I didn't complain because Mom was smiling again). Before she put me away, she kissed my face and asked me, "How did I get so lucky to have a horse like you?"
I think both of us are pretty lucky.