Girls who Love Horses

I used to be an eventer. That is, I used to train and show horses. I started riding horses when I was in 5th or 6th grade and was very serious about it until about my sophomore year in high school. I stopped for a couple of reasons. The first was that I was sold a horse by some people that I deeply trusted when they knew full well that he had a degenerative bone disease. I felt so utterly betrayed that I couldn’t ride anymore. What sealed the deal was being a full-fledged teenager.

It’s a pity actually because it was something that I was very good at and that I really loved. But the breaking of my trust really soured the whole experience for me.

My first horse was Magnum. He was an AQHA registered Quarter horse. When I bought him, he was very green and pretty much only saddle broke. When I sold him a few years later, and only because I had grown 6 inches in a summer and you could see half of my legs underneath him, he was a serious eventing horse and very well trained.

He was a character, Magnum. He had a polka dot on his nose. He would follow me around without a halter on. He would stop, in front of the judges, and scratch his nose on his leg. Every time. I’m pretty sure he did it just because he thought it was funny. He and I learned a lot from each other. I still miss him every time I think about him.

My second and last horse, Dancer, the one with the disease, was a Thoroughbred/Quarter horse mix. He was also completely green. He was tall and graceful and gorgeous. He was to be my grand prix jumping horse. And he probably would have been if I hadn’t had to retire him to pasture at the horrendously premature age of 6.

I miss riding. I miss the feeling of sailing over a jump, the closest I’ll ever be to flying I’m sure. I miss the bond of horse and rider. But mostly I miss the work. Working together to be better together and individually.

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