It was Tuesday before the trainer arrived. To be perfectly candid, I thought taking five days to reply to my plea for help was not what I would have done had the roles been reversed. Considering the gravity of the circumstances, I would have been there immediately or, at most, the next day. Anything longer seemed inappropriate considering the urgency of both the charges and the state of my health. Had I know she would not come out immediately, I'd have called someone else but it just never occurred to me she would take this long to respond.
When I got the call she was finally coming, I was definitely frustrated. I had spent those days in self-deprecating behavior believing I had no one but myself to blame for the problems on my farm. At no point then was I allowing myself any kind of understanding due to the gravity of my illness. If my horses were suffering the buck stopped at me and I carried that distorted responsibility like the albatross it was.
With word the trainer was actually coming, I put aside my feelings of frustration thinking I should probably be grateful she showed up at all. I needed input I could trust to determine the condition of my herd.
In hindsight I realize her untimely response was probably a more true indicator of her intent than her words; reflecting a nonchalance more indicative of her true attitude about my horses and me but more likely all horses and people in general. Her motives were more about what she can get from any situation than how she can help but I was too sick to discern that. She preyed on my vulnerability like the vulture she is.
Too overpowered by pain and weakness, I was beyond being able to do another farm tour. I had not recuperated from the last so my body was not capable of sustaining the kind of effort it would take to get through the barns viewing each horse and getting important feedback no matter how badly I wanted to do so.
Not wanting to compromise the evaluation because of my weakened condition, I had a plan to get the information I needed without me having to step foot in a single barn. On the computer I set up stall charts with instructions on where to begin and how to proceed. Each horse had its own line with a location for notes about weight, condition, feet whatever might be necessary.
Dave was sent around with this paperwork on a clipboard to accompany Crystal Baker so I would have a record of what was said about each horse. He was instructed to make notes on everything she said about each horse. I didn't want to be relying on his memory or communication skills. I needed this right so I had an accurate picture of my horses' needs so I could fix them.
I had the progression laid out in exactly the way I proceed when I show people the horses. The pages were set up like this: first barn begin on left, name of the horse in stall 1 Suede, horse in stall 2 Rhet, horse in stall 3 Storm. Move to the right side. Horse in stall 4 Reflection. Go to the hay barn and so on and so on. Not a single horse was skipped.
The reason I did this was because I didn't want to rely on Dave's memory or mine. I figured without the information written down, I would forget what I had been told before I could even utilize the It.
Before they got through, Jessica showed up so I asked her to take over for Dave. Knowing my husband is pretty sparse with his words, I instructed Jessica to take extensive notes so I would have the most accurate representation of what Crystal had to say. Little did I know when it was all said and done these notes would display specific misrepresentation of the horses' condition that would probably have gone unnoticed without them.
Another interesting aspect was Dave's note and Jessica's were very similar and sparse. Each indicated he/she had written everything that was said about a horse's condition. In hindsight I look at those notes as deliberately vague. Considering what I had asked for, there were few indications that any horse was anything more or less than thin but her words to me told a different story. Trying to use the list to tell me what I had wanted to know was impossible because the information was not there.
Her verbal assessment to me of the herd was not what caused the most harm because its effects were short lived. The most detrimental and far reaching part of her "help" to me where the seeds she planted with her words of advice. The damage caused there would pervade and affect my decision making long after the lies about the horses' condition was exposed.
To be continued.....
NOTE: This trainer called me last night having heard about the background post I had done. She asked me when "When did we not become friends?" When I tried to answer that question, she continually cut me off, which I then did as well, because I was not going to listen to her manipulations. She insisted I am twisting my words which is not something I am prone to doing. The only people I know who would accuse me of that happen to be those people I confront and some I have exposed for their inappropriate behavior.
Most people would tell you I am honest even when it is painful and that I call things as I see them. I try hard to tell all sides of the story.
With that being said, I will be explaining how I have come to my opinions about this trainer, what she did here and what I believe her motives to be. Some I left unsaid in the background post but I would be more than happy to post the specifics that led to those opinions as well. The bottom line is this woman lies as easily as she breathes air and what she did here was so far from "help" that I can not possibly leave it out of my story. Her behavior had an impact on my life that was not good. She affected how I dealt with difficult issues of the past two years. Her influence in my life will be no more easily forgotten than that of Angie Milles and Richard Galarza.......... so move over Crystal Baker, that's quite some company you have joined.
To be continued..............
The Trainer's Words........