When I think of our time together so many memories and thoughts flood my head. Some make me laugh, some make me cry but all make me feel such a sense of gratitude. I knew the day that I met you that you were special. You were terrified, but you were interested, so intrigued by the idea of connection. I knew you would take more time and skill than I had ever offered a horse before, but I also knew that we could teach each other. You were so guarded yet so communicative. I loved how wise you were… even in our first moments together. I believed in you. I believed in us.
I will never forget calling Lauren to figure out if I should put you on the trailer. We had gone to the rescue to get Maya and to look at you. We were not sure… and after meeting you I was even more not sure. You were so sensitive, more sensitive than any horse I have ever interacted with, but your energy was fantastic. I had to be present and grounded when I was with you. When we worked together it was simply you and me, nothing else mattered. Our relationship (and helping you connect with others) was going to be a lot of work, so much so that I almost left the rescue without you. But that was not the plan, you were supposed to come home with us, and thanks to Dawn and Lauren you did.
The first few weeks with you was definitely some of the most humbling times in my life. I could not halter you and that made me crazy haha. I could touch you all over, treat your bumps and bruises and essentially do everything at liberty, but once I introduced a rope, you were out and out in a very large way. You knew that I needed to grow as a horse woman and as a person and general and you were not going to let me take the easy way out… of anything. Even though that was incredibly frustrating at times, you challenged me to connect and communicate in new ways and for that I will always be beyond grateful. They say that everyone has one heart horse during their lifetime, I disagree. Bentley is my heart horse, but you are my soul pony. It probably sounds cheesy, but you knew what I needed on a level that I was not even aware of. You knew how to push all of my buttons and how to point out emotions that had been locked up for a long time. As I write this, the tears are free flowing, but I have so much comfort in thinking of how it felt to share space with you. You taught me to ground my emotions in a way I did not even think possible.
Our time together was an adventure but it was much much shorter than I thought it would be. I honestly thought you would be the 40 year old pony in my backyard with no teeth that would tote my kids around. I had the idea that by the time you were 30 you would accept kiddos on your back… maybe that was wishful thinking haha. Getting you started under saddle was so rewarding, yes you showed me what was up (more like what was up then down really fast…haha) but it is an experience I will never ever take for granted. I sat on you for the first time bareback, in a rope halter, in the pouring rain, with a tractor in the field and Luna barking… I was insane, but you went with it. From there I got a bit too confident, and you shut that down pretty fast, which I definitely needed. Then Neely got involved, helping me to get you started in a more conventional fashion. You rocked it. The first walk, the first trot and the first canter were some of the best moments I have ever had on horseback. Although you were a funky shaped pony, you could move. It felt like I was flying. I always dreamt about taking you down centerline someday, you would have made one heck of a dressage pony. I also dreamt about our bareback and bridleless freestyle to “Sweet but Psycho” by Ava Max… it would have been fitting for the both of us.
We did a lot of flying together… some way more enjoyable than others 😉 , but you forced me to feel things. To feel all the emotions and that is something we as humans do not do very much of. Thank you. All of the laughs, smiles, blood, sweat, and tears we shared were pretty remarkable. I would not change one thing. Yes, you challenged every thought I had ever had about working with horses, fractured my rib and reorganized my brain quite a bit, but I cannot help but be grateful. My life was never boring with you in it.
Some people thought I was crazy in sticking with you. They thought you were dangerous and a lost cause, but they were so wrong. You simply forced people to be in a place that most people did not like to be in… in touch with themselves at a very deep level. There was no overpowering you, we were a team and we had such deep understanding with one another. I was never going to give up on you, and I never did.
In your memory, I will continue to teach what you taught me; to truly be present, in touch and ok with wherever I am in a given moment. No judgment, no wishing it was different, just being at peace with the energy, emotion and life we are so lucky to live. Until we meet again….
Love you lots,