Go get her. At her age, she could end up in a bad place. And if things become such that you cannot later afford to keep her and cannot find a good place for her, then there are worse things than being put kindly to sleep by an owner that loves her.
Even if you only keep her til spring, and give her a graceful end, it would be kinder than allowing her condition to perpetuate.
You'll never say "gosh I'm so happy I didn't get my long lost mare when I had the chance"
You'll never say "I regret giving her a winter of peace and love before ending her life"
Go get her.
This in spades. I heard of a young horse I had bred being for sale because his rider could not handle him. I dithered and did not buy him back. I regret it immensely. Now I don't know where he is, I don't even know if he is still alive. I still trawl the sale sites looking for him and if I find him I'm buying him.
where am I, what day is it, am I still having a good time?
Well, here is the update. I drove up to see her with all of family agreeing that I should get her if it was her. Sadly, it was not.Was a remarkable resemblance, but when I got there this mare had a belly spot (large) and was not her. However, I was able to match the owner up with a friend who needs a leadline pony. So happy ending for the horse. I wish it had been her, I still think of her often, but such is life. Hope she is ok, wherever she is.