Sunday evening, 7/16/06, we went out to feed the horses as usual. Also as usual, I checked Glory’s milk status as her due date was 7/25/06. The moment I squeezed the milk into my film canister I knew that tonight would be the night. Her milk had gone deeply white, not just the color of condensed milk.
As evening came on, we readied two stalls, the larger for Glory and a smaller one for Walker to keep her company. I also brought down a sleeping bag and the foal kit. I had set up the little white Christmas lights already and they would give plenty of light to see by. It was a hot summer night, and all was quiet.
We left the two ladies there while we finished things up in the house. About 10 p.m. I went down to bed down on my sleeping bag.
Glory was so curious, and came up to the fence to watch me. I told her that I would sleep with her to keep her company and that I knew it was strange, but humans lay down to sleep. That seemed to satisfy her and she went back to noshing on hay.
I had an alarm with me, that was set to go off every hour, and go off it did. It was no problem to wake me up, and the first alarm also brought Guin down with her sleeping bag to keep us all company.
Each time the alarm went off, I would rouse myself and check on her; however that did not mean I was getting a lot of sleep. I admit that I have never slept with horses before and the tremendous variety of noises they made during the night made for a restless time for both of us.
About 2 o’clock Guin asked if I was awake and I said, “Yes”. She said, “Glory seems a bit restless now.” and I replied, “It probably won’t be much longer then.”
We both drifted in and out of a half-sleep for the next hour and then by 3 a.m. we really knew it wouldn’t be long. Glory had begun to circle in the stall, and when she would stand she would reach back with her nose and touch her abdomen, stretching out to both sides to do so.
Neither Guin nor I could go back to sleep now, and so we lay quietly watching the miracle unfold.
At about 3:20 her movement increased and she passed gas, then stood and spread her legs as if she was going to urinate; however, her water broke and gushed out several times. Glory’s pacing increased and then she lay down. Her head was facing the opening but her back was quite close to the fence line, so Guin and I decided to open up the stall walls to give her more room if she needed it.
Glory began to grunt with the contractions and because I know she is comfortable with me, I quietly walked around back to check on the progress. I could see two legs and a nose beginning to poke out and told Guin so. After a few more grunts I sensed that Glory was not happy. She actually got up and turned around, having her backside face out of the stall now. That was when I realized that one leg was MUCH further out than another. A locked elbow!
Without thinking, just knowing what I had to do, I reached inside, following the shorter leg up inside to the bent elbow. I attempted to get my hand around it, but, quite honestly panicked. I sent Guin to wake up Chuck in case I needed him, and once she was gone, I centered myself; knowing that I had to help Glory.
I said to her, “Don’t worry honey, I’ll help you get this one out.”
Once again, I reached inside and this time I was able to work my hand in around the elbow and cup it in my hand. The pressure inside was amazing, but Glory seemed to know what I had to do. With gentle, but firm pressure I lifted and slightly pushed back on the elbow, while also pulling on the leg that was further out. It took me three times of repositioning my hand and body, and the whole time Glory had her head up, with one eye on me and worked with me. Then, sluuuurrrrppppp, the foal was born!! It happened so fast and he was almost born into my arms! Glory let out a deep sigh and laid her head down to totally relax.
Within seconds both Guin and Chuck arrived, and the little guy began to rock up onto his sternum and shake the water from his ears! All was well!
To see pictures of our newest little guy, *GMC Coyote Bill, please visit our webpages. Thank you!!