/ Return to Riding /
When the day came, I was excited to see the Fjords, but my heart was pounding.
I got in the saddle and my hands shook.
There was a moment where it could have gone either way—I could dismount
and never get back on, or I could push myself. “You’ve got this. You’ve ridden
thousands of times and never had anything go wrong. It was one horse. One time.
You do fine with Arwen. You can do this,” I told myself. Soon, my heart stopped
pounding and I enjoyed the ride.
Two weeks later, I found a Fjord mare for sale just down the street from our
new farm—surely it was fate? We went to see her and my heart did not pound
once. I decided to bring Belle home.
Belle and I went on our first trail ride this past summer. It was hard for me. I
was very nervous—heart pounding, hands clenched. But I did it.
Thanks to a little mare that gave me my confidence, I had my passion back. I
had me back. And for the first time in nine years, I was me again.
I made drastic changes in my life: my
husband and I moved states, started a
new career path, and decided to show
dogs. As the years passed, it got a bit
easier, but I still cried. I was crying
partly because I was afraid of horses
and partly because I missed them.
/ Dare to Dream /
For various reasons, we found ourselves moving home. I was back on
a farm for the first time in almost a
decade, and I began to dream about
not being afraid of horses.
I don’t remember how, but I found
myself looking at a Miniature Horse
pasture pet. We brought her home.
I found I wasn’t intimated by her
32-inch stature and she did not bring
up the tears!
After two months of leading her
around, I started to think about driving. I found a Mini for sale that was
trained to drive. I went out to see her
and got in the driver’s seat. My heart
pounded. But I had never driven
before, so the PTSD was not set off.
I named her Arwen and we brought
I was fearful. If Arwen did anything out of the ordinary, I wanted to
head for the hills. But my trainer was
patient and my husband was supportive. He would tell me, “You can do
this. You are fine.” And he was right.
As the weeks passed my confidence
was building. But driving is not the
same as riding.
This past spring, I went to a horse
expo to see “big” horses. The tears
came back. But it was more sorrow
and yearning than fear this time. I
wanted to ride again, to feel a horse
underneath me again.
The next month, I found a trail
riding place that had Norwegian
Fjords. I called and asked if I could
reserve a Fjord specifically; I wanted
to see if I could, just maybe, get back
in that saddle.
YOUR HORSE LIFE
Belle at a fun