What could have been

I was really struck today, while working on a horse, what path my life could have taken. Even as a little kid, all I wanted was to follow in my dad’s footsteps and be a vet. I used to go to work with him and sit at the end of the exam table while he went about his day. At about 5 I would watch him do spay/neuters. I loved it. Everything about the animals, and the medicine. But my life took a different path.

Today we had a horse come in from the field with a massive swelling, like half a cantaloupe. Impressive, and really obviously an abscess. She wasn’t lame, didn’t have a temp. All the things that could have been really bad were easy to rule out. The vet happened to be out for another horse and let me do the whole procedure, of blocking and draining this abscess. I had an awesome time. I have never used a scalpel blade to cut into another living thing. Never mind sticking ones entire finger into a horse to break down the muscle between the abscess and the opening. I did it all, and was really struck by how it fit. How I realized in that moment that it could have been my work. I would have been a good vet, that I do know. But it was a road I didn’t go down for many different reasons.

I am happy I was able to experience what I did today, and the thrill was beyond measure. The horse is doing well, and is, I’m sure happy not to have this abscess causing it pain. I am left to wonder just what might have been.


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