Simply a Quiet Thought

You don't have to look far to see hundreds of thousands of people who have had to deal with very bad news. The Susan G. Komen Walk for Breast Cancer as shown by Rudee for instance.

Being around people who have been delivered bad news is not new to me. I was talking with my patient, Ms. M., this weekend. She was supposed to have been in the middle of a cross-country road trip with her husband, destination northern California. Instead, she was lying in a hospital bed, paraplegic after falling from her horse. I was asking about how her family was handling all this and I asked about her horses-who was caring for them?

Her horse's name is Ephraim. "I was going to change it, but after a while it grew on me and seemed to fit him. He's a sweet, sweet boy. So gentle. Goofy. A big galumph."
I said that I bet he missed her.

"My daughter went down to the barn the next morning to feed him. When she got there he just lowered his head and buried it in her chest." My patient and I were quiet for a moment, and we wept.


  1. My patients have all been delivered bad and sad news. Once in a blue moon, I bond with a patient or family and truly identify just as it seems you did with your patient. Sometimes, it can be so hard to be a caregiver.

  2. I don't bring it home nearly as often as I did as a young RN, but somedays I still do. The visual of this horse burying his face with the daughter and knowing how sad he must feel breaks my heart. Seems to epitomize the whole situation. I know that you know how I feel and I thank you for your comment.

  3. How terribly sad and beautiful this story. I'm feeling more than I can write. What despair held in the moment of horse's head against daughter's chest. Heartbreaking. I hope they will consider keeping the horse and wonder if therapy couldn't include him in some way...
    This broke my heart but I'm grateful you shared this.

  4. They're keeping the horse. I told her about hippotherapy--that will be up to rehab to get together--she'll need some work first to be able to sit up straight and the blood pressure is affected due to her injuries. It will be a long process.

  5. Made me cry too, how beautiful and sad. Sending her and her family, and the dear horse much love.

  6. Such a moving story. You must be a blessing to the patients you care for.


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