ML and MeL updates
|October 1, 2014||Posted by Melinda under Uncategorized|
The ML update is intimately entwined with the Mel update, so let’s start at the beginning and see where it takes us.
When I checked on ML this morning, after writing the previous blog, she was a LOT worse than last night.
Last night I didn’t actually notice anything until half way through a ride where she was more quiet than usual and then saw a small draining tract with minimum swelling.
This morning I had a lame horse, with significant more swelling, more drainage, who was very quiet, painful and most definitely unhappy. She sorta limped around, ate hay….but no doubt she was a sick horse.
She was really reactive – went up on her hind legs a couple of times but with quiet and slow movements let me clean her up pretty well and I smeared ichthammol ointment all over – mostly because the BO wanted me to and I thought it couldn’t hurt.
The Barn Owner helped me and confirmed a vet was coming that afternoon, so I bid ML adieu, knowing I wouldn’t see her for 36 hours and a little worried she looked so crappy compared to yesterday – but also knowing that the abscesses would probably look worse before they looked better and the risk of complications with Pigeon Fever is really low. So yes this sucks, but we will get through it.
I didn’t think to give her bute ’til I was an hour away, so ah well. I messaged the BO and begged her to try to get the vet to prescribe me some tablets because I wasn’t sure I had any that weren’t expired.
Then tried to move on with my day.
Which I was marginally successful at considering the lack of sleep and high anxiety last night dealing with yet another straw on this poor tired’s camelback called “Pigeon Fever” which had increased in size and weight greatly after seeing poor ML this morning.
I had spent the night deciding I wasn’t emotionally ready to handle a time and emotionally intensive rotation like what was coming up next week. I promised myself I would talk to admin and try to belatedly get time off that I didn’t really take after my sister died 3 months ago. Then I tried to sort through my motives to make absolutely sure I wasn’t just sneakily trying to do it so I could have the week before and after my 50 mile ultra off, or baby my poor abscess-riddled horse. I decided that no, panic attacks, and feeling constantly on edge because it just takes one.more.thing to completely rattle me means there is something WRONG.
But then I woke up and being an eternal optimist, everything seemed more doable. Even if I was more cranky, less patient, and there was a bitter, desperate tone to my humor. Totally doable!
Which lasted approximately until 4:50pm, when I called my husband to beg him to stop by and give ML some carrots and love after work “just because” and I found out he was on the side of the road with CHP after being in an accident coming home.
At which point I bolted towards admin office with 10 minutes to spare, pleading to be allowed to take 2 weeks of leave starting Monday because I had found my breaking point and it was 2 incidents of bad family news, a sick horse, a car accident, a couple of redgirl-related incidents, and a serious lack of sleep in a period of 48 hours.
Combined that with some serious anxiety about my upcoming rotation next week because I’m still at that place in grieving where a couple of times a week I need to excuse myself for 5 min and take some quiet time and deep breaths. I couldn’t imagine that was possible in the upcoming rotation that involves being locked in a truck with my peers and instructors doing ranch calls for 8 hours a day and being on call every other night.
So, just like that I’m off for the next two weeks. Which is wonderful and awful at the same time. Wonderful because I feel like I’m ready to take the time for redgirl that I wasn’t ready/able to take in June, and awful because I have to make up these 2 weeks post graduation.
As always, about the time I reach the point I actually DO something about anything, I catch a break.
The Barn Owner called with the vet beside her to tell me that MerryLegs looked SO MUCH better than this morning. Like, night and day. Almost even better – she was being the perfect little patient for the BO and the vet while they worked on her.
I’m reasonably sure at this point ichthammol is complete magic.
No antibiotics, but a 3 day course of bute ’cause she had a little fever and it will help her feel more comfortable.
Since it will be easier to throw ML medicated mashes twice a day if she’s by herself, I had a brilliant idea of moving Farley out of the pasture into the smaller quarantine pen in order to isolate ML instead of moving ML. ML doesn’t need the additional stress of being put into new pen away from her familiar friends and neighbors (who at this point either have it or don’t). And seriously, what’s the risk moving Farley to the small isolated pen next to the other pigeon fever horse? That she might get pigeon fever? BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
Of course, with the good news about ML under my belt, my load feels lighter and now I feel like maybe I could do 2 weeks of equine field service?
But that’s been the trap all along – most of the time I’m doing OK. Not great. Just OK. Waiting until “that one thing” comes along and is too much. Which happens most regularly when I’m on call or having to deal with the unexpected or can’t get any alone time. And that seems to be the very definition of the equine field service rotation.
Not the right rotation for me, right now. The easiest way to shuffle my schedule around is to simply delay it instead of trying to switch it with something else, and perhaps at the end of the 2 weeks off instead of just “taking it easy” I’ll be a little more steady in my orbit and I little less easily knocked askew.
And just maybe, I’ll get some sleep tonight. And tomorrow evening I’ll drive way too fast to the stable where my MerryLegs will eat my carrots and Farley will still be pigeon-fever free (if pissed that she has been placed in the pen of shame that was once occupied by a steer, and most recently a mini-horse.).
I hope you get lots of nice pony snuggles to help you through…
bonita of A Riding Habit
So glad you’re taking the time for yourself 🙂 Let me know if you want to, uh, hang out? What do normal people do for fun, eat lunch or something?
Totally. Let’s see what works out. It would be fun. I think. I’m usually really bad at normal people stuff.
I find that when I’m hovering around a breaking point and that LAST THING happens that causes me to finally take a break, I also seem to immediately receive uplifting news that makes me ponder taking said break. But then I ponder over the fact that perhaps if I hadn’t taken the break the universe wouldn’t have given me the good news? Perhaps I only got the good news because I finally gave in to some time away and to myself? These things are impossible thoughts without answers, but I still ponder them all the same.
Enjoy your time away from things; I hope that you’re able to do all things that make YOU happy for YOU in that time and are able to unwind back into a stable, happy place.
Go enjoy those horses, nap and breathe. 🙂 Thinking of you.
Glad you’re taking some time. It’s important to be selfish and think of yourself first sometimes. I hope you get to relax and play with healthy ponies. Hooray for disgusting ichthammol (it did great on Major’s hoof abscess too).
Sending both you and ML happy vibes.
Hey Mel!!! you are totally doing the right thing! I haven’t had the chance to say bye once I finished the residency, but I had following your posts. And you are right! You do need a break! And you would go crazy in the Equine Field Service if you need to be alone. So, enjoy this time, charge your batteries and clean your mind and heart!
All the best for you!
Congrats on finishing your residency!!!! Very excited for you. And I’m touched that you stuck around to read my random stuff. And it means a lot that you agree with this decision, since you are even more familiar with the services than I am…
So, What I left out of this post was the part when about half way through the day I got a message from my BO who told me a vet that we both know was recommending I put ML on “this powder stuff that goes in her grain” and let the disease take it’s course. I wasn’t familiar with the drug so I looked it up….and he was recommending giving ML CORTICOSTEROIDS!!!!!
My sick baby horse with a RAGING infection and he’s recommending an immunosuppressant. Couldn’t believe it.
Horses come into the teaching hospital ALL THE TIME, REALLY sick because their infection was treated with steroids and now the horse is in REALLY bad shape. I really want to trust vets. I really dont’ want to have to second guess everything they tell me and do all my own research. But this happens ALL THE TIME.
Most of the time I don’t talk about vetmed mistakes here – there’s a lot of variables between a patient and client and vet and looking on from the outside it’s hard to get the whole story and know exactly what went on and mostly I give the situation the benefit of the doubt.
But right now, from a horse owner point of view I’m a bit overwelmed because it’s not stressful enough to try and deal with a sick horse and deciding what to do – now let’s add the additional stress of not feeling like I could trust what local vets were saying.
Maybe there was some higher level reasoning that I will someday get as a “more mature vet”, but yesterday I was pretty pissed at what could have happened if I had blindly followed the advice.
Also, For all of you that took the time to comment here, I really appreciate it. My mind is sorta numb and I have a head ache and I just get stuck on the fact that this isn’t a particularly interesting or well written post and feel sorta bad for even posting it since it falls even below my rather lax standards. But, it wouldn’t be real life without a couple of these thrown in now and then eh?
Ugh, I’m sorry everything is so messy and complicated, but glad that you’re taking care of yourself. I know that “I can do it! Wait, no, too many things! Or maybe I can?” feeling all too well and hitting the pause button there is very, very wise. Hope your two weeks are peaceful and rejuvenating!
Me too!!!!! It sounds stupid, but just doing little organizing projects, likeing getting my files in order has helped me feel better. Now if I can just get ML squared away and on the right tract and healing I think I’ll be OK at the end of these two weeks.
Phew, such a load my friend! I am so glad you are taking some time for yourself. You are a superwoman but even she needs to hang up her tights for a minute. Healing thoughts to you and ML, and NO PIGEON FEVER GDAMNIT! to Farley
I think you made the right decision in taking that time to deal with the lemons life was through at you . I think it’s smart of you to recognize that you needed to press pause for a bit in stead of trying to plough through and risking certain things that are important. I can’t imagine having a sick horse and having to trust someone else to look after her in my absence. That is stressful enough
hang in there.. you have a lot on your plate.. it will get better , it always does.
I’ll update today, but this comment is especially timely since I’ll be calling the vet out this morning because it looks like ML got one of the rarer forms of pigeon fever and needs additional care. I’m immensley grateful that I’m the one out there twice per day or more checking on her progress and making the decisions.