Five years ago, on June 18th, life was very different. I was married and my husband had just gotten out of the Army. We were staying with my dad on his farm (which I had no way of knowing, at the time, would eventually become my farm) while we were looking for a house. It was my husband's birthday and my gray mare Larry was due to foal any day.
I had been on foal watch for two weeks. I didn't know when she was really due to foal because when I had her checked the vet had said she wasn't in foal, so what I was up all night waiting for was a very pleasant little surprise. Larry had been dripping milk for over a week but refused to lay down and have the foal.
My hubby and I wanted to go out to celebrate his birthday, but I was afraid to leave the old gray mare. On our way out I stopped into the pen and checked Larry over. Her bag had actually shrunk way down and she was no longer dripping milk--it appeared that she would hold off foaling for another day. Hubby and I left for dinner in the "big" city, 90 miles away.
And when I got home only three hours later, this was waiting for me.
We named her Paula, because it also happened to be Paul McCartney's birthday (my ex's idol). Usually gray horses aren't born gray, and Paula had a lot more gray hairs in her coat than most soon-to-be-gray foals. In those early days you could clearly see how loud her markings were.
I especially love the eagle on her neck.
She had the biggest ears!
She still does, actually, but back then we could pick up HBO with those things!
Then as most foals do, she grew....
And she got lighter...
So that is the story of how I ended up with this pretty, big, white, ornery mare named Paula.
We're both back where we started, but we've both come so far. She's my girl and I feel very blessed and fortunate to have celebrated five years with this special horse. Happy Birthday, Paula!