I’m sure when you read "The Horse of a Lifetime” in the title, a certain horse popped into your head. We all have or have had a special horse that really sticks out to us above the rest, and if you haven’t yet, then you will. It doesn't have to be the horse you actually own. It might be a horse you ride in lessons, or lease, or just take care of, but it doesn’t matter because to you it feels like yours.
I found my horse of a lifetime at school. The first time I rode him I literally felt like I was a beginning rider again. He was so smart and had so much talent but I couldn’t seem to figure him out. Fast-forward a year and a half later and when I ride him now, I feel more connected with him than I ever have with any other horses, including my own. He has won my heart and continues to teach me new things every day, and I couldn’t be more thankful for him.
Thank you for always teaching me new things. No matter what kind of ride it is, either a lesson or just a hack, he always teaches me something, whether he's throwing a temper tantrum and refusing to go past the arena door that he's literally been past every day for the past five years, or being a perfect gentleman and taking me over jumps that are bigger than I’m comfortable with. He has more experience that I do in every aspect, yet he still tolerates me every single day. He's always teaching me something, and even though sometimes the lessons he teaches me aren’t the most fun, I wouldn’t want to learn them from any other horse.
Thank you for always taking care of me. Even though I have asked him for some crazy distances or completely panicked and left him to make all of the decisions in front of a fence, he always makes the right choice. Even when he should kill me, he doesn't. After a bad fall, when I was literally terrified to even jump a cross rail, he gave me confidence again and for that I will always be thankful. No matter what I am doing, I know that he will take care of me, even when I'm absolutely no help.
Thank you for giving me a shoulder to cry on. When I’ve had a bad ride or a bad day I always head straight for his stall. Nothing comforts me more than just grooming him while he listens to all my problems. He always find a way to cheer me up and make me smile again without even saying a word. We have an unspoken bond that can't be compared to anything else.
Thank you for being special. No matter what, another horse could never compare to him. When I get to the barn, his stall is the first place I head to. Seeing his ears perk up when I say his name just melts my heart because I know that I’m just as special to him as he is to me. A lot of people might not be able to understand why he's so special to me, or they don’t see what I see in him, but that’s okay because they have a horse that they feel the same way about. Whether he's spooking at the most random things, or surprising me and jumping cross country jumps like they’re no big deal, he continues to become more and more special to me everyday, and no other horse could ever replace that.
My list could go on and on of why I’m thankful for my special horse, but most of the reasons I love him I can’t put into words. He’s just special. That’s the only way I can describe him. If you haven’t already found your horse of a lifetime, I hope you do and I hope that they impact your life the same way mine has. If you're lucky enough to have found your horse of a lifetime, then don't forget to cherish them everyday and thank them for being so special.