Do you remember your first horse? How did it happen? What were you thinking on that day? Did it lock you in the horse world forever?
For me, it did. My first horse as a green broke Appaloosa gelding james TJ! He was hard headed and a bit of a jerk but I remember! He was a Christmas present! He was to be brought to the house but the person to haul him lost their truck (stolen) the night before so my folks had to make some extravagant story to get me to the stable! He was in a stall with a half eaten ribbon around his neck! It made me one happy kid!!!!
Last night I had the extreme pleasure and being part of a girl and her first horse!!! I was here to whiteness the joy! She came out to “take a lesson on my new horse” then was told that Suzy Q was actually HER new horse!!!! The sheer joy rolling off that almost 15 year old girl was contagious!!!!! You guys, it helped me remember WHY I do what I do! Why I found a love of horses. Why I love seeing people/kids riding and learning all about horses!!!!!!
I work with all ages of students to help them figure out how to become with the horse. Honestly, I could always use someone to coach me! We never stop learning! Someone asked me today, after watching one of my runs, what could I improve? I won the race that day but I still have things I need to work on! It as nice to converse over these things!
Some people just have a natural ability with riding. They automatically sit correctly and handle the reins correctly. They could go a year without sitting on a horse and they just click into place! I wish I was one of these people but I am not. I have to tell myself things like “heels down”, “shoulders back” “don’t lean in” etc. it’s a mantra that rotates in my brain!
My husband is a natural! He had never ridden this horse (Splash) and it was a new to us saddle. He got on and found buttons I didn’t know the horse even possessed. Jeff has always had a natural seat and soft hands! I was tickled to watch him ride today!!!! I think I finally have a horse that he will actually ride!!!!
My point is simple. Sometimes you have to work on yourself. Some folks just have a natural ability. We can work to become that natural with time in the saddle!
As humans, we need companionship. Yes, our horses and dogs offer that for us but we need humans too. The issue with horsewomen and humans is that we often have strong minds and clash with others. This can be a problem!
Now I’m not saying we are all friendless losers or the b word… I’m just saying it takes special people to bond with horse people! Horse people call it a tribe or a circle of friends. We know a lot of folks. Why? Because we learn from others and seek more knowledge, therefore we know a lot of people! But to be inside the tribe or inside the circle, we have to have a true bond.
This seems like a really serious post but it’s not! I’m fixing to flip it!
What does it take to be friends with a horse woman… horse person… etc. ??? First, you have to be strong! Why? Because we will have you tote heavy things like water buckets, bales of hay, bags of feed and sometimes our animals from point A to point B. That requires a strong body. Most of us are crippled up from riding so we need others in our tribe to help out!
Second, you have to be able to look at any horse and figure out what is “about” to happen. It’s called horse sense. If you don’t have it, find another friend. There will be times when you will need to figure out if said horse has stepped on a rock or broken its leg. It’s hard to tell depending on the endurance of said horse.
Third, you must be loyal. There are things you will see your horse friend do that cannot be discussed outside of the circle. Things like peeing in a stall 😱 or begging for coins to eat before they pass out. It’s a thing. You cannot talk about it and you have to accept it.
Fourth, you have to have a sense of humor. I mean… if you hang out with me long enough, you just have to have it. As many times as I have randomly hurt myself… seriously… you just have to laugh with me not at me!
Fifth, once you are in, you are in. Unless you break some sacred vows. There are some things that cannot be forgiven. I, as a horsewoman, cannot reveal these sacred things to the public. But once you do one of these things, we have zero issue with walking away. Zip. Done. See ya. However, we will still know you and smile and say hi. But you will know when you are eradicated from the circle.