“As long as you’re planning a journey, you own the journey. The minute you embark on that journey, the journey owns you.” Chinese proverb
I have been riding since I was seven, and have had my own horse(s) since I was twelve – I’m now past the half-century mark. In that time there have been a variety of horses in my barn, but there has always been at least one appaloosa.
I was raised by a single mother. Although you hear many claim they ride with little money, and it is often a relative reference, this was the reality of my early life. We sacrificed all but the bare necessities for me to follow my passion for horses. Growing up I literally had three pairs of jeans and 5 t-shirts as my entire wardrobe – but I had my horse, so it didn’t matter! After many year, my mother and I eventually were making enough money, between us, and jointly bought our own home, with property populated by our furred and feathered family.
I started my riding just for pleasure, but fell in love with the sport of eventing and pursued that until my second horse made it very clear this was not his sport. Fortunately for both of us, he was an amazing show-hunter and was tolerant of my pursuit of Dressage, so those were our sports for many years (that’s us, many, many moons ago). Dressage became my focus, and I truly fell in love with the art and partnership that it should be (more on that in my posts).
Along the way I rode and trained many horses, for myself and for others. Each one taught me something, and I like to believe that I made their lives a little better. It’s always been about the horses, and the magic of developing a partnership with them. It eventually became clear that this was not very compatible in a sport that was rapidly becoming about money, highly bred horses and competition – leaving the art behind.
After becoming disillusioned with my sport, I kept my horses only for pleasure and pursued my career. Fast forward to today when I have reconnected with my passion, and I enjoy spending time with the many characters that occupy my barn. I am still unsure where my renewed passion will lead me … but I’m certainly enjoying the journey!