On Sunday I’m leaving my house to pick up Frankie and take him to Newmarket, where he will have an MRI on Monday morning. I’m dreading it. Not only because it involves driving alone for hours on the rotary carpark that is euphemistically called the M25, but because I’m terrified about the results and what they might mean. Just a month ago I was told that Des would never return to upper level work and the chances of Frankie ever been ridden again are honestly about 50:50.
The injury he has is rather obscure – essentially chronic bone bruising, and the fact that he had no necrosis and his joints are in such excellent shape (both of which are common with this injury and indicate a career ending prognosis) means that he has some chance. The prescription was intensive rehab. He’s spent the last four months on the spa, the water treadmill, walking and having plenty of hands on physio. As you can imagine this has not been cheap – no change from £6,000 and with the MRI’s at £1,500 a pop, we’ve really thrown everything at it.
All I want is my pony back. The one I had the first season who debuted on 83% and high scored that year with 88%. The one who had the world at his hooves and who fuelled my hopes and dreams. With so much talent, he was never going to be easy, but I really thought we were on the path I’d hoped for when I packed up my husband, kids, horse and dog and moved to the other side of the world. In 2014 everything seemed possible. Now it is hard to imagine.
On Monday we’ll find out if that dream is still alive. The best case scenario is that the reactivity has settled and we’ll be able to commence ridden rehab. The worst case is that it hasn’t, and if that is the case it’s the end of the road. Another dead end. While I’ll be disappointed for yet another detour, more than anything I’ll be heartbroken that here is another horse that won’t get to show the world how good he is. He’s a character and a pet and has been my confidante and support on many an occasion.
So forgive me if I’m out of sorts this week. I’m doing everything I can to stay positive, knowing that nothing is worth worrying about until you have something to worry about. I’ll keep visualising us cantering down the centreline in the shadows of the Eiffel Tower. That’s worth mulling over.
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