|My big, beautiful Ben|
Ben is NOT an only child. I actually have 2 other horses - 1 a retired mare living on a retirement farm 5 hours away, and a 4 yr old half Arab who has just recently started his life as a riding horse.
Yesterday, for the first time, I rode the youngster. This was the first time in a year that I've ridden a horse that was not Ben. I gotta tell ya, it felt a bit like cheating.
First of all -this guy is a slender 15.0 hh right now, compared to the 16.1 hh tank that is Ben. Secondly, his gaits are incredibly smooth. I.Don't.Move. Seriously, it feels like cheating.
And I loved every second of it.
I did get a little ribbing from my barn-mates- mainly because Ben has always been a bit awkward. He's not what you'd consider a purpose bred-dressage horse, haha. But then I realized, my joy, especially in this moment wasn't really stemming from this new horse, but rather, coming from Ben. Our hard work over the last year has allowed me to grow and change and become a much better rider than I was. Admittedly, I used to be a passenger on very forward horses. Ben broke me down and I had to put myself back together again (not like I'm anywhere near a finished product- far from it) and learn to REALLY ride- I have to create everything, there is no sitting back and using god-given talent.
And so now, when I get to ride this little guy- everything is a breeze.
Without Ben, I probably would not feel the same way. Nor would I be in the same shape, or have the capability that I have now.
And for that, I am very grateful.
Even more so to continue on our journey together.
I <3 you, Ben!