Tuesday, October 24, 2006

She Fell Off Her High Horse...

My daughter did. Literally.
Off her high horse at horseback riding class.
Three years of riding. Her first fall.
Fortunately, she is fine.

Steve called me after picking her up and told me. She got on the phone and cried. I was sitting at Daniel's baseball game at the time, helpless, feeling sorrowful for her, but enormously grateful that she wasn't hurt.

Normally, she sleeps at the other end of the house in her super-cool, ultra-pre-teen aqua blue bedroom with the enormous giraffe painted on the wall. Last night, I told her to sleep closer to me, in the super-boring, blue and yellow wall-papered guest room. She readily obliged. I cuddled with her in the bed for a while, wiped her tears, prayed with her, encouraged her to cry as much as she needed to, to let the fear out, and to journal through every detail of it. I got her some Motrin, some water, and kissed her a dozen times before leaving the room. She was out cold within minutes.

She fell sleep with tears on her cheeks and complaining of a headache. I went to sleep with a broken heart and the phone number for a criminal negligence lawyer clenched in my furious fist.

This morning, she was fine. Shaken, frightened, but fine. Right now, at 6:15 PM, she is outside playing with her friends. The sound of her laughter is more beautiful today than it has been in a long time.

What would I have done if she'd been seriously hurt - or killed?
I am reminded of the fragility of life.
The way in which life can be drastically altered in a flash.

I love my children. From the moment I laid eyes on them, I have been enchanted. Kristiana will turn 13 on Monday. She was born 15 days past her due date, wrinkled, hairy, fat, and luscious. Daniel came only one day late, arriving while I sat in a tub at the Birth Cottage in New York State. It still blows my mind when I think that my body produced their bodies. That I was the channel for the passing of two new souls, new spirits, new human beings from heaven onto this planet.

When they are hurt, I writhe.
When they are happy, I am ecstatic.
My heart isn't on my sleeve.
My heart is on my driveway playing basketball and out on the street playing tag football at the moment.

She fell off her high horse yesterday and landed on my heart.
Soft landing, I hope.

Be well, my sweet girl.
Be strong.
Cry whenever you need to.
Laugh whenever you can.
And come to Momma for a hug anytime.

PS. She read it and told me that her room is green, not blue. Also, her head still hurts, so say a prayer for her, okay???


Goddess of Leonie said...

so grateful your beautiful girl is okay...

i did wonder however about the lawyer however... i don't know the situation at all... but i do feel that falling off horses is part and parcel of horseriding... we cannot put blame on human nature or on horse nature. i grew up on the back of a horse on the farm, and have fallen from them too many times to count. i've broken my arm, my sister has a lengthy scar on her leg, my father has a broken collarbone and has had severe concussion, all from horseriding. when we would fall off, my dad would just tell us "get back on that horse... and the quicker you get back on, the easier it will be." he was right ~ as frightening as it was, to "get back on that horse" was an analogy of how to live life. for me ~ that not knowing, that trusting in your horse, your own instinct, and the way your body knows how to fall is all such a part of the experience of horses. they are beautiful, powerful and potent, just like our wild selves.
bright blessings and angels to you and your beautiful family ~~~

GailNHB said...

To Leonie and anyone else who might be concerned about the lawyer comment: I was only kidding about the lawyer thing. I would never sue over such a thing - unless it was clearly a problem of serious negligence or drunkenness on the part of her instructor. It would have to be wildly apparent that wrong had willfully been done. That was certainly not the case yesterday.

Kristiana got right back onto the horse after she fell and finished her class. She is ready and eager to return next week.

I'm sorry if my comment raised a few eyebrows. No lawsuits are in the making. None at all. Gail

Nancy said...

I read what you wrote with an ache in my own heart because I feel the same way about my own children. Then I had a thought of those kids I've had in class who have rotted teeth because parents both feed them poorly and fail to get them to a dentist and the kids who can't see right and parents don't bother to get them glasses until May, if ever. It's not a matter of economics either; these families are on assistance and could have free medical services. What is it that makes some of us mothers so passionate about our kids and yet other mothers clearly neglect theirs?
Saying a prayer for your young horse rider.