An Open Letter To The Twenty-Something Equestrian Who Refuses To Give Up

Sunday, February 7, 2016

To the twenty-something equestrian reading this-

To the groom who has spent the past three hours braiding horses and it's 10:30 PM and your fingers are raw and bleeding, but you still have three more manes to do and that 4:00 AM alarm is already sounding off in the depths of your mind and you wonder what miracles will need to be performed before you get so much as a thank you-

To the working student who wonders how many more stalls need to be mucked before you find a sense of validation; how much more grass mowed, how many horses fed, how many arenas dragged, how many lessons will go un-had before you remember why you came-

To the veterinary technician at the equine hospital who is covered in fluids and guilt for not having been able to save this one and you just want to know why it all has to hurt so much and how many more times you'll have to run an IV line into a helpless, dying horse before the ones you save outnumber the ones you lose-

To the college student who had to give up riding all together in order to focus on school; that dedicated pupil who wonders how many finals you will need to pass, how many credits you need to achieve, how long it will be before you have a job that lets you pursue your passion again-

To the young trainer who takes on all the rank, green horses that everyone else avoids; how many setbacks will you face, how many more people will refuse to take you seriously, laugh patronizingly at your age, before the work you do starts to matter-

I want you to know that I see you.

I want you to know that He sees you.

Hey, groom.

How do you feel when that horse you so lovingly care for takes their victory gallop, shining and elegant because of your attention to detail? Does it make your heart blossom to see them healthy because you take care to notice and remember every part of their “normal”? When the rider waves you over to stand beside them for the picture, do you choke back tears because you remember why you took the job in the first place?

Hey, working student.

When you make a sudden breakthrough, do the piles of manure feel worth it? When you establish a connection with someone influential, do you sing praises that you were blessed enough to be in the right place, at the right time? How does it feel to have the trainer compliment how neat you manage to keep the barn? Do you cherish those things you learn when the lessons finally come?

Hey, vet tech.

When you see the relieved smile on the owner's face, do you mirror it with a grin of your own? When they reach out to hug you, can you feel the gratitude down to your bones? As you change the dressing on a wound and that precious foal reaches around to nuzzle your neck, do you feel your calling as a healer coming back to life?

Hey, college student.

When you get an A on the exam, do you rejoice knowing that you're building a future for you and the horses you will own? When you get the internship you wanted, does it fill your head up with dreams? Do you relish in the joy of peacefully grazing horses in the fields you drive by?

Hey, young trainer.

When that flighty horse realizes he can trust you, does it all start to make sense? When you win the ribbon at the show and people ask for your business card, can you feel the hope rising within you? As you bed down the horses for the night and make a plan for tomorrow, does that vision start to creep up and come alive again?

It may not feel like it today or tomorrow or even the day after that, but I promise you that what you are doing matters. You matter. One day, these moments will be distant memories and you'll look back and see the things you learned and hey, you might even miss it.

I promise you that future you're building? It's worth it.

You're going to be okay.

It will all work out the way that it should.

Keep going.

Keep dreaming.

Keep building.

a twenty-something equestrian who refuses to give up

Amadeus and Kai have been doing excellently. By some strange miracle, I suddenly don't completely suck at long lining, so Amadeus and I have been doing a lot of that for the past week. He is such a champ at it; he's beginning to develop a topline again. Our next appointment with Dr. Pittman is on Thursday. Hopefully, I will remember to get an updated picture of his radiographs to show everyone!

Kai is growing in size and confidence. He is 13.1hh, has a 60'' girth, and is 56'' long. Every day, he gets a little lighter in color. I'm starting to think he'll be completely greyed out by the time I start riding him. I WANT TO HIM TO GO THROUGH THE CUTE DAPPLE STAGE WAAHHHHH.

How was everyone's weekend? Any exciting plans for this week?


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