The Horses

So depending on how well you know me depends on how much you know of the horses. I had many and now have a couple that I haven’t seen a long long time (nor do I know when I’ll see them again and if I’ll be able to keep them). I don’t talk or write much about the horses and my life with them. I used to train horses for other people, teach adults and children to ride and even those who truly wanted to learn how to train their own horses and how to teach people to ride and train. I was often called a excellent teacher, a gifted horse trainer and amazing rider. Everyone who ever saw me and in the more recent years just heard about agreed that my path in life was with horses. Right now its too painful to talk and write about such a huge part of my life that is no longer there.

I recently found this bit of writing from when I had to sell most of them and when it became clear my life with the horses was over. Otherwise I probably won’t reference the horses or my time with them.

May 13, 2009

I took pictures of my horses. And some shots of the kids, the trees in the setting light. But it was the horses that really got to me. See I take pictures of them all the time. But this time was different. This time wasn’t so that I’d remember what they looked like when they were younger. No, this time was for two reasons. So I could list them for sale and so I could remember them when they are gone. Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to have and later breed unusual horses. It started with the Sorraia horses. My love for the rare Iberian horse led me to the more easily bought Spanish breeds of today. Ever since I was 13, I knew I wanted a big grey/black/buckskin stud. He would be my man. And I’d raise the foals, keep one or two, and sell the rest to pay the bills. And I’d get mares too, oh yes, a 13 yr old’s dream can be pretty big. I wanted at least one purebred mare like my stud. And then I’d have a few other breeds, colorful and athletic. I wanted a Appaloosa, a solid black mare, a grulla, a red dun, so many I wanted, but one or two to start would be fine. I would only buy the ones I “knew” were the horses for me. This dream never changed, only evolved. The Irish Draught got added to the list. And possibly a Frisian or a Lipizzaner since that was Mom’s dream horse. So many great possibilities!

I was 18 when I bought my Stud. He was perfect. He was the one. I had never spent such money or decision time on a horse. I drove with my Father to the middle of Illinois just to look at him. I was the proudest and at the time, I thought luckiest horse owner around. And it was my Mother who gave me the piece of mind to spend such money, for I was investing in my life long dream for the future. By the year’s end out, I was set up for my dream. I had two fillies, a young mare and a stud. Sure they were all young, it was the only way I could afford them. But in a few years when I would be ready, they too would be ready to ride, breed and show. I was following my bliss. Later that year, I helped Mom buy her dream horse. The one and only White Horse of Vienna ~ A Lipizzaner. She talked of Austria all the time, the White horses of Vienna, the brewery’s and anything else related. All these years and she now owned one who would be her life’s partner. I cannot describe the joy, the childlike glee in her voice as we talked about “her” filly. The way her eyes would light up and she would become weightless as the everyday stress would lift from her has she simply stood in the field with her filly. She could already envision the foals galloping around our nicely fenced (also a vision…) fields. Life was better than good. The horses responded to us, the farm and the little training we did do with them, like magic, they improved in leaps and bounds.

Now I list this dream for sale on the Internet. In the paper. I tell people of the dream now for sale, to the highest bidder and the best equipped. The last bit of my life I have in this hellhole. The only bit I even get to control. At least it is I ending it this time. The dream is gone. The life is gone. How fitting that the last straw is cut by my hand.

So I list my horses. My life long dream. I list all the things that I love about my horses, the reasons I bought them. The hopes that I had. The places I was going to go. And I do it so someone else will buy them. My world is hard, cruel, and full of twisted irony. I can only hope they find homes in the world I thought I lived in. The one I used to dream about. The one that Mom lived in, the one full of possibilities and hope. The one full of life and love. The one where dreams can come true. I desperately hope that the horses at least find that dream. So I let them go, ending my life long dreams and hopes. In hopes that they will at least fill someone else’s.

They are not just horses. They are mine. I love and respect them. I hoped and dreamed with them. I raged and wept with them. In them, I saw life, mine, happy and fulfilled days spent with them on the farm. Later, my own farm. Together, my horses and I would teach the world how to dance, love and live together. To dream. And now that is gone. I say goodbye to the dreams and loves of my life. They cannot be replaced and they cannot be renewed. I can only hope that one day I will dream a dream half as big and full of life.

You don’t want to know what happened to my beloved Stud, the beautiful mares and fillies I had and the other wonderful farm horses. Most of them were sold if you call collecting less then what we could have sold them slaughter for sold.. Some were actually given away a attempt to keep them close but only backfired to me getting ripped off and months of problems and headaches. I am beyond bitter. I couldn’t take care of my children (the horses). I failed them. I’ll never attempt to have my own horse breeding and selling business again, the most I could ever do is work for someone else’s business.

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3 thoughts on “The Horses

  1. Wow. I had no idea. I’m literally sitting here with tears in my eyes. There are no words…..

    The way you write about these things, it like sucks the reader in to feel how you’re feeling. Well you know what i mean. All i can say is it seems writing helps, so keep doing it.

  2. I am very sad to hear about the horses. I agree with your friend Ashley – you do have a way with words that not only seems to let you get your thoughts/emotions out, but touches others. Horses are a way of life for us, even though we may not ride much or be around them much anymore, we never forget about them. But in a way, our own hardships with horses have made us appreciate them for their friendship, freedom, and beauty more than most who train and work with them professionally and take it for granted.

    I am greatly saddened to hear of your troubles with the horses and having to part with them. I do think (if I’m not too bold to say) that horses are a part of you. They will find a way back in your life one way or another, and there are plenty of horses that need someone like you who knows quite a bit about taking care of them, training them, and showing them love. No other horse can replace the ones I have had to part with in my own life, but each horse I meet and train needs my love. And just as much as they need my love, I need their long-suffering patience and unconditional understanding and love.

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