My first lesson as a Morgan breeder

"Time flies, when you are having fun…!" - as they say! And how much more so, when your hands are so full, you forget pretty much about everything else in life. 

First you simply forget about eating, but you get a ton of exercise instead. As a result, you shape up like never before, and when you look into the mirror, you see a much younger self, as a joyful reminescence of those years, when you never had to watch your weight… :)  Then you seem to forget about going to the movies, that you used to do to entertain yourself, but instead you find yourself watching your horse friends' video clips on Facebook and YouTube having the ball of your life as they replace those virtual reality Hollywood stars… You have made some new friends and found brand new heroes! :) You also tend to forget complaining about the weather that almost used to be the expected behavior as a "normal" person, and you quickly adopt to the Norwegian proverb saying: "There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing… :) Well, these are just some of things that changed in my life in the last two years of becoming a horse breeder…  

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As much as these sometimes pretty challenging lifestyle adjustments mean in terms of chiselling your character, as well as shaping your future, at the doorway of entering our third breeding season, the number one reason, why I believe we can now start talking about such a thing as the "ShannonVale Morgans" breeding program is our 3 amazing foals that God blessed us with!

SVMH Risen To Shine (27.03.2016 - buckskin colt)

SVMH Celestial Surprise (28.04.2016 - bay filly)

SVMH Brilliant Expectancy (26.04.2017 - buckskin filly)

The first foaling I ever witnessed live was the one when I actually had to pull up my sleeve and help our experienced broodmare. JMF Twist Of Fate was about to give birth on Easter Sunday to her 4th baby, when all my fears of not wanting to witness a birth with the wrong foal position became a stark reality in a wink of an eye! I saw one hoof appearing upside down... 

With no vet around, only a friend holding a torch in one hand for me to see, and a phone in the other to call for assistance! Having obviously no time to waste, I had no other choice, but to jump into those sterile gloves and reach in trying to find the other leg. I have no idea how, but soon I felt the other limb being crossed over the first one blocking the way… As I gently moved the hoof in position I was praying… When the other leg showed up, I thought, now I could have a sigh of relief… No! Time was ticking and only the tip of the foal's nose showed up. Then the head came finally, but no shoulder. The widest part refused to make an appearance… 

I kept on praying and was delicately holding the legs of the foal not to slip back too far while the mare was resting from pushing, but no progress. As my friend kept me updated on the minutes of the delivery, I was getting really nervous… I knew that if the foal's position inside is compromised any other way, I am not going to be able to help and the vet was still on her way… What seemed to be an eternity spent in agony of what will happen if the mare gets exhausted, I was crying out for the Lord to come to our rescue… and Fate - this amazing horse with such an incredible intelligence and foaling experience suddenly rolled on her back and turned to her other side! This must have jerked the foal into the right poition in the birth canal, and after a good number of determined pushes by her dam, the foal finally slipped out on the straw bedding… With his hind legs still inside her mum, this lively little long-legged boy already was stretching to get up. Literally within a few minutes he was already "risen" and standing strong on his feet and nursing! Welcome to our wonderful world, and our horse family: you are truly "Risen To Shine" :)

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My next opportunity for learning this lesson to never give even mental space to your fears was not waiting for too long. When Windfall, our palomino mare was approaching delivery time, yet not really giving away any indications of her intended timing, I was silently thinking to myself: "I just hope she will not go into labour when I do not notice it…" When did it happen? You guess…  One morning with my morning coffee still in hand, I looked out of the window overlooking their pasture only to see a reddish colored "something" close to Windfall on the track. First I thought it had to be a roe dear, or perhaps a fox, but as I was rubbing my eyes to see clearly, I realized that it MUST be a foal after all! I jumped into by boots, ran out as fast as I could to find out, and sure enough, there it was: a most cuddly, cute little bay girl sheepishly hiding behind her dam's hind staring at this two-legged creature - me: a beautiful "Celestial Surprise"! 

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