Thursday, January 24, 2008

What keeps you from riding? Bunion Surgery for one!

Well I am now in week 3 of recovery from a double osteotomy with hammer toe repair and various other things which produce a great and glorious FrankenFoot. I did this in the dead of winter so as to lose the least possible amount of horse time. Usually January-February are so cold and windy here that it takes a great resolve to spend much time with the horses anyway, and they are content to stand in whatever sun they can find, eat hay all day long, and daydream. My family is the bunion gene-pool par excellence; both my mom and dad had to resort to multiple padded insoles and both still had some mobility loss so I was determined not to let that happen without a fight.

Here are some things that surprised me:

1. Anaesthesia is a lot like getting run over by a Mack truck. I had expected blissful sleep and awakening to a new day. Ha! My brain had been adjusted and not in a good way. So had my stomach. So had my emotions. Who bursts into tears when someone holds a door open for them? Post-operative patient Flying Lily.

2. Pain medication is not necessarily your friend. Yes, it lets you sleep, but it also sends you strange nightmares of being chased through jungles by snakes with legs. I moved over to generic ibuprofen as soon as I could.

3. The pain was not that bad actually. It would come every now & then but didn't stay long. Now (the surgery was January 2nd) it is rare. If I overdo, walk around too much or something, I notice it.

4. Those strange pins the surgeon left in were scaring me - they would have to come out some day! Well they're out now and that was nothing; I barely felt it. I did not watch, but my dear husband took pictures so we could creep ourselves out later.

5. Crutches now: there was an awakening. All my life I have underestimated how hard it is to get around on crutches. I now have the greatest admiration for anyone who has to manage them. Biggest challenge: Carrying a cup of coffee on crutches. The carpets can testify that I did not get this down very well.

6. A Cavalier King Charles spaniel can be just the best little convalescent companion imaginable. My little Gabriel was at my side through sleepiness and waking, through daytime television (heavens what a wasteland!) and journal writing, through every minute and he was in lapdog heaven. I'm sure he thought I had finally seen the light, and given up all activity which takes me out of the house without him.

I did get to visit the horses last weekend, and my dear husband brought my thoroughbred his peanut butter sandwich and my Mountain Horse his sliced apple. I got to sit in the car and watch. They were looking happy in their blankets. I miss them so. I probably won't ride for another month, but they are being worked and well cared for by good friends.

Monday, January 21, 2008

How Horse-Crazy Were You as a Kid? Quiz

How Horse-Crazy Were You as a Kid? Find Out Today!

OK now, if you are so kind as to read my blog I am guessing you were nuts about horses as a youngster. But just how horse-crazy were you, on a scale ranging from pretty interested to almost psychotically obsessed? Take this quiz and find out. Note: This quiz is designed for the child who was interested in horses but somewhat horse-deprived. If you are one of those lucky people whose parents actually had horses, or bought you a pony for your birthday, then you cannot be truly obsessed - sorry. Your desires were gratified and I was sick-jealous of you way back when.

Give yourself 10 HC (horse-craziness) points for each 'yes' answer, and total up your score to find your HC childhood profile.


1. Did you ever climb someone's pasture fence and actually get up on a completely strange horse? (Give yourself 10 bonus points if the horse then wiped you off on a low-hanging tree branch.)

2. Did you read almost every horse book in your local public library?

3. Did you have little plastic or even cardboard horses that you kept in shoebox 'stalls' or other homemade environments?

4. Did you watch TV westerns looking only at the horses, not caring who were the 'bad guys' or who got shot unless their horse also appeared to have been injured?

5. Were you easily able to pick out the times in major horse movies such as "Black Beauty" when the important lead horse suddenly changed colors or breeds?

6. Did you live for the times when your parents let you "ride the ponies" at a carnival, fair, or other pony string? Give yourself 10 bonus points if you actually packed carrots in your pocket for these times.

7. Did you propose to your parents creative financing schemes to allow them to buy a farm to house your horses-to-be? Such as: "You could sell the car, and I'll get a job (at age 6)".

8. Did you write little stories or even lengthy novels in which a girl and a horse figured prominently? Give yourself 10 bonus points if you laboriously practiced drawing horses as well.

9. Did you spend significant time looking at breed pictures in something like an encyclopedia, picking out the "best one"?

10. Did you have at least 5 horse names picked out at any given time, just in case?

Score Key:
100-130 points: The Gold ring. You were psychotically obsessed, and your parents and teachers probably worried about you. Congratulations! This is the elite class. It's evidence of true love that other people think you are insane.

80-90 points: Still pretty crazy, you may have had other interests in life and a somewhat balanced personality with just this little blip of horse-crazedness. Don't be depressed; you still have time to manifest genuine equine-related psychotic disturbances. Recommended strategies (such as going deeply into debt for horses) will be noted elsewhere in this blog.

60-80 points: You were a little too sane as a child for true HC success. Try to become a little more unbalanced as an adult. You can practice for equine-related psychosis by doing little exercises: while driving on the freeway, throw all your folding money out the window. You can keep the change. Also: take your favorite comfy sweatshirt and stain it with grass and mud, then wear it to the grocery store. Help is available to remedy your unnaturally normal life.

50 or below: You were far too sane as a child, and this is an emergency. I strongly recommend you get a friend to take you out on a trail ride on her steady-Eddy 15-year old Quarter horse, on a beautiful day. Never mind that this horse is one in a million and you will never replicate this pleasant experience on your own. Just enjoy and allow yourself to begin to let go of your sanity. She will make it look easy by providing the $ truck and trailer, and the horses will walk on and off by themselves while tacking themselves up etc. After this, follow the steps in the above paragraph. You are on your way, and you are not alone!

Now get out there and act horse crazy! You only live once.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Welcome to my blog: When Lilies Fly

When Lilies Fly is a blog about being a middle aged midwest matron who is crazy for horses. I own two great horses: Montana is a thoroughbred who retired sound from a brief racing career at age 4; he stood around for a couple of years, then came into my life and re-arranged the furniture. Gentle John is a Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horse, gaited and smooth, a palomino with the classic blonde personality. Both horses are boarded at a rather large nearby boarding facility, which gives me access to riding companions and expertise and something to gossip about - all important needs.