Around 1am I woke up to the sound of Darth Vader breathing in my ear. It was a text message from my friend Jessica. She thought her mare was about to deliver her foal. I jumped out of bed, through on my shoes since I was sleeping in my clothes to be ready for this, and was about to race to the truck when she wrote back saying it was a false alarm. Disappointed I climbed back into bed.
When she and I went to Kentucky to get Dulce, we thought we were racing against the clock. Her mare Lassie was very pregnant and showed signs of imminent labor a few times before we left. I often told her to stay here while I went to Kentucky, but we decided to go together. I told her when it was Lassie’s turn, I’d be there.
Well, that race against the clock turned out to be the tortoise versus the hare; we were the hare and Lassie was the tortoise. Almost two weeks to the day from when we left, and Lassie kept teasing us all with hope and frustration. She is a maiden broodmare, which means she has never been pregnant before, and that means nothing makes sense. All the normal signs aren’t normal with a maiden mare.
This morning after she let me know it was a false alarm, I’d start to fall asleep to wake up with a start every fifteen to twenty minutes for fear of sleeping through Darth Vader’s long, drawn out breath. I got out of bed at 4:45am to feed everyone. I wrote asking how things were, and she told me nothing was happening. I went out to feed the horses their hay when I realized I left my phone in the house. I ran back in to find a message saying Lassie was going to deliver. I got the dogs in, ran to the truck, and off I went.
Problem was it snowed last night, and I had ice all over my window! Did that stop me? No way! I drove with my head out the window while I blasted the defroster. Yes, it was a bit cold at twenty eight degrees, but I needed to get there. For some reason my window wasn’t defrosting as I drove down the highway at 90mph. Don’t tell anyone that especially my husband. When I got to the first frontage road, I hit those brakes and pulled off driving down the windy road in the dark with my icy window. This is when I realized my defrost temperature was on cold. I quickly turned it to high, and within 30 seconds I could see! Even though I could see, I pulled into the wrong driveway! Backed up quickly and went down to the next, correct driveway, parked and ran to the horse.
What I saw was a total conundrum. Lassie lied down with her tush by the wall, nose and front hooves poking out, and there was no way for us to pull the foal out due to lack of room. We were on a deadline. Her water broke, so we want to get the foal out in 20 minutes, 30 minutes tops. There was no way we could get the foal out in this spot, and luckily Lassie read our minds. She got up, which in a way was scary but good. Jessica’s Mom and I became flippers from a pinball machine. We stood with our arms outstretched, and each time she came to the wall, we would shush her away from it with one of our arms. Finally, she plopped down perfectly. I know Jessica wanted to pull, but it became important for her to stay at Lassie’s head. Lassie was scared, and Jessica brings her comfort. If Jess would have come back to help pull, I know Lassie would have gotten up to follow her.
Jessica’s Mom and I grabbed on to those tiny legs and began to pull with the contractions. This beautiful filly came out easily. Michelle (Jessica’s Mom) quickly got the bag off of his nose, and within a few seconds she moved and took a breath, and we were so relieved with glee. Jessica cried, and I fell in love with the beauty of it all. I pulled the bag down her body some more as we let the foal rest with her momma before we pulled her out the rest of the way and moved the bag off of her completely.
Whiskey is simply beautiful. There is nothing more that can be said. She began talking five minutes after she was born. I couldn’t believe how much she loves to nicker! I can’t wait to see what she looks like in a couple of days, and what a sweetheart she is. Jessica was the first person she saw so she imprinted on her. You should see how this little filly walks up to her the moment Jessica kneels down in front of her. Congratulations Jessica on surviving these 21 days of Lassie being overdue, for sticking it out, and on this beautiful filly.
At the very bottom are a couple of videos for you to enjoy of her first steps and the first time she nursed.