Lexi is my teacher. It’s taken me time to really learn this important lesson. She is my first horse, so I don’t have years of understanding the intricacies of equine behavior and psychology under my belt. I wish I can say that I’ve learned this lesson through stillness with Lexi, studying her movements and listening to what she had to say. But, I didn’t…
Daily routines are a necessary part of my life providing reliable order to keep my family running smooth. My routine yesterday unexpectedly went awry and through the chaos, I recognized another gift from God revealed through our horses… the gift of community.
Horses are bigger, faster and stronger than us, their human comrades. We compete with them, relax with them and work them into a sweat. They can unload us at any moment of their choosing. But most of the time, they cooperatively do the great and often very difficult things we ask of them. Why do they do it?
When my now 10-year-old daughter was five, I had a difficult time finding an activity she loved. Everyone in gymnastics already knew how to cartwheel, cheerleading was too loud and soccer was too competitive. I found a lovely small riding facility named Neophyte Farms in Simi Valley, Calif. and took Avery for her first lesson. She was timid of her mount Tyler’s head, but she hopped up on his back and walked into the arena. I started riding shortly after because besides looking like an incredible amount of fun, I saw an opportunity to show my daughter that adults never stop learning.
Horses have always been inside my head. My strongest early “horse memory” – probably at age four or five – is reading the book Casey the Clumsy Colt. It was a horsey take on the bull in the china shop, and I read it over and over. At the time my parents rented a farm, but there were no horses, only cattle and cats. Later we moved to the suburbs.
Julie Goodnight shares with us her two perfect matches.
I have been blessed with horses that I know were my perfect match—horses that were in my life, just at the right time, to teach me just what I needed to know and learn at the moment. As the old saying goes, “you get the horse you need, not the horse you want.”