Horses... one of God's greatest creatures. Unless you have them, or have had them, you may not understand.
I spent some time growing up in New Mexico. We had horses... 7 of them. I still dream of them.
Horses have a calming effect on a person. There something about riding that makes you feel free and that the world holds endless possibilities.
Needless to say, I was most happy when my Girl started racing. The bond she had with her horse, Sephirah, was amazing to see. They were like magnets. My girl would walk and Sephirah just followed, no harness necessary.
Sephirah was just weened when we introduced her to my Girl, who was 8. I think that's why they were so close. My Girl would treat her with fruit roll ups, gummy worms and cherry popsicles. She'd sit under her and rub her belly, just like with her previous pony, Bunky.
Tragically, we lost Sephirah in a traumatic accident. My girl called me screaming. I rushed from work, not understanding anything over the phone other than hurry. I was not prepared for the amount of physical trauma our poor Sephirah had suffered. I'm talking ripped flesh to the bone on her hind legs from her hips down and buckets of blood. Thankfully, my Girl's Step-Mother was a Vet Tech and had sedated Sephirah. None of the vets could come put her down. I had to physically remove my girl from the premises in order for her Father to do what he had to do. Her desperation was more than I could bear. My poor girl wouldn't even go in her bedroom at my house until I removed all of her racing ribbons, photos and horse decor. We spent the next day in bed. So sad, Sephirah was about 7 yrs old. We lost her all too soon.
She was an amazing creature.
After Sephirah, my Girl didn't ride for months. I couldn't blame her. She'd lost her shadow.
Finally, she met Skeeter. He was beautiful, 4 yrs old and already broke. I think he came along to ease her fears of never riding again. Skeeter was shy of her at first. The next picture was taken as she was gently getting him to come to her. He finally kissed her on the nose and they were bonded.
Unfortunately, I received another phone call in the middle of the night a couple of months later. Skeeter had collic. (sp?) The vet did all she could, but his stomach ended up rupturing. He had to be put down. I arrived just after Skeeter breathed his last breath. My Girl was just sitting, rubbing his face, and crying. As with Sephirah, we kept a lock of his hair.
My Girl hasn't raced in so long now. I miss seeing her glide around the barrels or bending the poles. Even better were her 16 second arena races... they make your pulse speed. I'm glad she still rides her Father's and Step-Mother's horses. It's a beautiful thing... to see your daughter carefree. She just hasn't felt the need for her own again. Maybe she never will.