Last night I was feeling low when I went out for last feeding. After I threw hay for the six ponies in the turnout, I leaned against the fence and let out a heavy sigh, looking at the moon and pondering my troubles. Within just a few moments, I felt a presence by my side. Willowtrail Wild Rose had left her pile of hay and joined me. I took great solace from her presence as well as feeling touched that she would make the effort. For a few minutes I scratched her in her favorite places then let her go back to her hay – before her paddock-mates ate it all!
An acquaintance told me a related story recently that I doubt I will ever forget. Ginny is faced with a challenging health condition that impacts her mobility. She felt she needed to give up the equines in her life because it just didn’t make sense to keep them when she wasn’t using them. She and her family sold them all, ‘only to find out I couldn’t survive without the smell of a horse nose.’ Ginny now has a working pony, and the stories she tells about Sadie make me smile from ear to ear. And Ginny is overcoming her mobility issues with help from Sadie. They are truly an inspiration to me.
At one point Ginny got discouraged about her health problems and put Sadie up for sale. She had numerous inquiries, but she ‘ran across Pat Parelli saying, “It’s not about the riding…it’s about the relationship.” I decided he was right. She was the only thing that gave me any real enjoyment, and my husband and daughter did not want me to sell her.’
When Rose came up to me last night as I was wallowing in my trivial problems, I remembered Ginny and Sadie. Like Ginny, I’m not sure I can live without the opportunity for pony nose kisses. When I first got a pony, my own Sadie, it was all about doing. Now, having ponies, including my Fells, is for me more about the relationship than it is about accomplishing things. On occasions like last night, when Rose shows she knows I need some solace, I am reminded that my investment in our relationship pays dividends greater than I ever imagined.