Fous Feminine Ann is what her paperwork said. A registered half Arabian. I knew her as Lady.

When I was a little girl living in Oregon, all I wanted was a horse. I dreamed of the perfect one night after night. I begged and begged. My Dad had other ideas for our little ten acres of land though. One day, I came home from school and my dad said he had a surprise for me. I ran to the pasture and what do I see? Nope. Not the horse I so desperately wanted but a Black Angus bull calf! I was to raise that calf. I was disappointed but got the last laugh as that bull hated everyone but me. I learned how to ride using that bull.

Then my dad died and my mom sold the bull. Still I dreamed of a horse. That perfect horse.

Many years later, I moved to Kansas. I became pregnant and had a son. When he was a baby, I became friends with a woman who had horses. She invited me to come out riding with her and I happily agreed. Upon first sight of Lady, I was in love. An old retired barrel racer, she moved with such grace. Only 14.5 hands tall, she wasn't large enough to scare me like some horses I had met. I was kinda nervous that first time but she had the patience of a saint.

Over the next few years, I got to ride her fairly often. I ended up dating my friend's brother and eventually married him. And still Lady was a constant source of joy in my life. Moving up to this town, I spent time with Lady daily.

One day, my friend and I had decided to go out riding. I realized I had forgotten my Pepsi in my car so I went to retrieve it. Suddenly, I had this pain in my chest, I found myself 15 feet from where I had been and I was laying flat on my back. Lady had used her head, slammed it into my chest and thrown me there. I was completely bewildered. I got up and tried to go back to my car and again Lady threw me away from the car. I got up and held her halter while my friend went to find out why Lady was acting this way. There was a baby rattle snake just under the driver's side door of my car. Lady saved my life.

Several years later, I went to check on her like I did daily and discovered I couldn't find her. I didn't think too much of it the first day as she lived on 80 acres. The second day of her not coming when I called scared me. I spent 8 hours that day looking for my Lady. Walking back and forth and all over, I called and cried and screamed for her. Nothing. My husband came looking for me. He found her. Upside down in a little ravine, held there by a young thorn tree with 4 inch thorns on it. She was ALIVE!

We called my father-in-law for help. He brought his big truck and I personally drove that truck, pulling Lady out of that hole by her feet. I, terrified I was going to dislocate her legs trying to get her out, cried the entire time I pressed on the gas. We did get her out of that hole. She looked like hell. She was bleeding all over, with massive infections from that thorn tree. I quickly brought her water which she was very grateful for. After a couple buckets, she laid her head over my shoulder giving me a hug. Telling me it was going to be ok. I spent the next six months healing and rehabbing her. She gave me several more years of her love.

She was everything to me. A little girl's dream made flesh. My psychiatrist, my partner, my best friend. I've lost track of how many times I ran to her when I was angry or upset. She never judged. She was always there for me. Always the perfect Lady. I've dearly loved her for over a decade.

On December first, two thousand fourteen, this perfect lady was nearing her 36th birthday when she was called home. Now it is Christmas Eve. I sit here crying as I write this. The mind knows what the heart refuses to accept. All I want for Christmas is my friend back. I want to wrap my arms around her neck, have her lay her head over my shoulder, smell her, feel her, have her tell me one more time it's going to be ok.

I miss my Lady.


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