Saturday, March 19, 2011

Big Day, Second Thoughts...

My daughter is so excited she's vibrating with it.  Today my dear friends Cheryl and Andy are driving 6 hours down from their home in the North Country to bring their daughter's first pony to our barn for my daughter to love.

They've done this before.  Two years ago Cookie came to "camp" for the summer, and it was the best summer my kids ever had.  Unfortunately last summer Cookie couldn't come as she was recuperating from an injury; however, now her vet has cleared her and we're hoping we'll be able to rehab her and that Sophie will be able to ride and show her this summer.  (Noah, my soon-to-be 12 year-old son, is regrettably to tall for Cookie, and is now riding (gulp) my sainted mare, but is thrilled to have Cookie back to love on and fuss over.)

The kids know that having a pony means work, and that they, not Mommy, are to do that work.  Yes, we're at a boarding facility, so they're not mucking and feeding, but they are grooming, tacking, untacking, exercising, wrapping, bathing, clipping and doing all the other routine pony care.  They know that ponies need regular exercise and their responsibility to the animal comes before any plans with friends. 

This being said, sometimes I have serious second thoughts about the wisdom of entrusting such a responsibility to my children.  Last night as we're leaving soccer practice Sophie came to me and said, "Mom, my chest hurts. When I hit my hand against it it gets worse." Of course I was immediately concerned, and a million thoughts start popping into my head, heart failure being number one on the list. (Lotta child athletes collapsing of heart failure in the news lately, however, none as young as nine. I know, I'm a dramatist.)

Luckily, before I go into full blown panic mode,  I look closely at the chest in question and notice that there is a small pin, an American and Irish combo flag in honor of St. Patrick's Day, pinned onto her shirt in the center of her chest. Big sigh. "Soph, it's a METAL PIN. Of course it's gonna hurt if you hit it."

Her reply?  "But it's got one of those plastic safety thingies on it." (Which, mind you, she'd whacked the stupid thing so hard and often that the pin part was poking through the plastic safety cap, leaving a nice red mark on her skin.)

Really? This kid should be getting a pony????  I'm seriously considering calling Cheryl and telling her to turn around.


  1. A pony! Oh, happy day. Sophie will survive physically, but heart-wise, it is all over.

  2. LOL! Don't worry, it's not like you are turning them loose in a field with the pony and hoping for the best, you will be there to supervise. It's a great learning experience, emphasis on the LEARN part..for you and the kids. If they did it perfect from the beginning, what would they have to learn?
    btw I have 3 in college now, and still have those moments..

  3. I recommend to anyone to get a horse and ride through those teenage years with your child. No matter what stress we were feeling, we always enjoyd each others company at the barn. Good luck