Its going to take a while, but if you're patient, you will someday find that it is worth it- Not just a motto for the journal I am about to start here, but my motto for life.
I don't know where to start- so I will start with my story since I have had Sadie. At some point I will go back further, and get some of the nitty gritty details of my life as I know it, written on "paper" (or in a thread here on the HF.)
My life was getting to a point where it was some-what unmanageable. What I mean by that is emotionally things were weird. I use the term "weird" because there is really no other word for it.
I was married, to a great man, had a beautiful daughter, and a barn full of horses. I was a stay at home barn bum, and from an outsider's perspective, I had it all. Ha!
I had plans that spring to take my mare Rain to her first show. She was a beautiful breeding stock Paint, with the best heart. She was FUNNY, and she tried hard. When she suddenly colicked really badly, and we had her put down- after 18 hours of pure hell- everything in my life started to change. I can now look back, and see it changing at that moment, like a wind tunnel. Something in my life was missing, and it wasn't just Rain. Although I sometimes think the past few years would have been so much easier if I'd still had her to talk to. A part of me was missing, for a long time, I thought it was a horse. I was a horse collector. I had a Bay QH Gelding, a black Percheron filly, a tobiano Paint mare, a sorrel QH mare, and an chestnut overo paint stallion. Everytime something happened in my life, I filled the gap with a horse.
So after Rain died, I started shopping for, you guessed it... another horse. I found Sadie on craigslist, and went to see her. I had never owned a Standardbred, but it seemed like a new adventure to fill my most recent gap with. I fell in love with her the second I saw her. In January, there is NOTHING pretty about Sadie. Her big wonky head, giant mule ears, and a coat that a foot thick! But there was just something about her- the way she looked at me, the way she nickered every time I came close, her derpy personality. So, home she came.
Never ridden. What a project.
6 weeks later, my husband wants a divorce. He says I'm not really here- not really with him, not really "in it." What does that mean?!?!
He's right- and what kind of a person would I be if I challenged him to stay in a relationship with someone who is not "in it." Whatever that means. I didn't know what he meant, or how he could tell, but I knew he was right. I wasn't.
Without getting into to horrifying details of the divorce- I will just say that I took Sadie, and left.
Sadie and I moved to a dressage barn a few towns away. I was the live in stable manager- which was PERFCET for us. She needed to be broke, I needed to work on everything horse related. I spent my days in a barn anyway, so that wasn't much different for me. 25 horses, a 60x180 heated indoor arena, 75x225 outdoor arena, and 200 acres of flat fields for galloping- and a XC course. Man was I LUCKY! Sadie and I trained with the best. We were the exclusive Maine location for Eric Horgan, we got to ride with Lendon Grey and Jan Ebeling.
I spent so much time on the back of Sadie. I spent so much time sitting outside her stall, and on the grass outside her paddock and just letting my soul pour out.
Sadie was the first to know I was gay- And she still loved me! What a relief. Not a darn thing changed between us when I'd finally realized and accepted that I was homosexual. And THAT was one of the most amazing realizations of my life. I know she is a horse- but the fact that I was being honest with her- and myself- and the world didn't end, gave me the confidence to face the rest of the world head on.
Women came and went. It was an interesting adventure exploring who I was. I met one woman that struck me like a bolt of lightning the second I saw her face for the first time. We dated a bit, she came to the farm here and there.
It was winter, and she has no real interest in horses, but she sat in the barn freezing to death while I did night check, and fed/watered/ and checked the overall condition of 25 horses... at 9:00 at night. She was a trooper. So eventually, Sadie and I decided it was time for our next adventure- and away we went.
We now live on the coast of Maine- me with my GF, her at a farm about 20 minutes away where she is very well taken care of- by someone OTHER THAN ME! And THAT is wonderful. We are currently in the market to buy a house so Sadie can come home too. I don't get to see her everyday, and it's time for her to be with us, even if it means I have to do all the work
I learned that one horse is enough. I don't need to collect horses to be a horse person. I don't need MORE horses every time I have a bad day. I masked and hid from so much of myself by having all these horses... and turns out- I didn't really know JACK about horses! You can own horses over every breed and color, but if you never take the time to learn anything- read anything- LISTEN to people who know some things- you really wont ever know anything about horses. And the same goes with knowing a thing or two about yourself. You've got to take the time to listen, or you will never really know.