Sarah and Sadie's Story - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By Strawberry4Me
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 5 Old 01-13-2014, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Coastal Maine
Posts: 695
• Horses: 1
Sarah and Sadie's Story

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.
Pat1960 likes this.
Strawberry4Me is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old 02-01-2014, 07:30 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Coastal Maine
Posts: 695
• Horses: 1
So I will go back a bit here with an overview. I was born to my biological mom (obviously) and the product of an affair. So my mother gave me her husband's and my older brother's last name. The separated before I was born, but my mom wanted me to have the same name as the rest of our family. My father didn't admit that I was his until I was in high school, and still to this day only wants to show up when there is credit to be taken for things he's had nothing to do with. Like my wedding, or my high school graduation. Hell, the guy even showed up at my college graduation... I lived with my mother for most of my childhood. She was a heroin addict and very abusive when she was using. We traveled to a lot of places, mostly big drug communities. That's what I grew up thinking "traveling" was. So I never wanted to be a well traveled adult. Staying home where I was safe was all I really wanted to do... I use the term "safe" very loosely because truth be told, home wasn't really safe either. I missed school, missed meals, and missed bathing. I never had many friends because as soon as I had been at a school long enough to make friends, (which was hard to begin with, because I was dirty and smelly and the new girl in school) we would move and I would have to start all over again. I would be left with my older brother a lot of the time, and he wasn't really old enough to be watching over me. My grandfather eventually stepped in and took my brother to live with him, and left me there. I still to this day cannot fathom why anyone would take him away due to living conditions, and leave me there. So I was on my own. My mom would leave me home for days, even weeks at a time. Luckily I lived close enough to school that I could walk, and I always had 2 meals there. I am around 8 years old at this point. When my mother was home, she would always have strange people over. Many times she would leave and I would stay up waiting for her to get home, so I could make sure she was in bed and safe. This went on for years. YEARS.

One night in middle school, I had a friend over because my mom was leaving, again. She came home sometime during the wee hours of the morning, and I woke up to find her unconscious on the bathroom floor. Overdosed. So I called 911, and cleaned up her "mess" while they were on their way, in order to protect her from getting in trouble. They took her to the hospital, and my friend and I went to school. I stayed with my aunt for the rest of the week, but as soon as mom was out of the hospital, I was home again.

At 13, I had had enough. I told her to go to rehab or I was leaving. So she did, for all of 21 days. Then everything started all over again. I asked a very nice teacher of mine if I could move in with her- she said yes. So I left.
Strawberry4Me is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old 02-01-2014, 08:21 PM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Posts: 729
• Horses: 1
Posted via Mobile Device
hemms is offline  
post #4 of 5 Old 02-28-2014, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Coastal Maine
Posts: 695
• Horses: 1
So I stayed with the teacher while my mother was in rehab. During those 21 days, I had learned to trust her enough to tell her about the things that had gone on during the span of my 13 year life. She was horrified, and on several occasions told me that she wanted me to stay with her.

Being 13 and loyal to my mother- I moved home as soon as she was out of rehab. After all, she had gone for me. (I didn't know at the time that in itself was an issue.) After a few weeks of the same partying and being gone all the time, my mom told me we were moving out of state to live with her boyfriend who had just been released from prison. He was serving time for rape (of a 13 year old girl) and drug trafficking. I was terrified, and I knew it was going to be a bad situation. I left and moved in with the teacher.

We went to court about 5 months later and she won legal guardianship of me. That was a really tough 5 months, but hindsight, it was the first 5 months of the rest of my life. (So now, when you see me refer to my mother in other threads, you will know that I am talking about the teacher that I moved in with. The one that EARNED her title as my mother by caring for me and loving me unconditionally and putting my needs first, not just giving birth to me.)

After I graduated from junior high, we moved a few towns over so I could geta fresh start myself. I was going to a school that my mother had gone to, and I was associated with her to no end. I had teachers that were once her teachers and would say things like "you are just like your mother." It hurt my feelings every time- because I wasn't. I also had a slew of behavior issues, and had a hard time recovering from them because once you earn yourself a bad reputation, you never really get the benefit of the doubt. You are guilty by default.

Starting high school with a group of new faces was both terrifying and exciting. I got to go to an Alanis Morissette concert the night before my first day of my freshman year. I met Alanis the second time that night, so I was excited to tell the story to a fresh set of faces. Unfortunately, the new school was so small, and all of the kids had been together since kindergarten. So fitting in as the new girl was hard. I struggled a lot, and turns out, the first people to really accept me and make me feel like I had friends were the kids that were headed down the wrong track. So I followed them. My reputation soon was the same as it had always been- the girl that intentionally gets in trouble, runs her mouth, says things she shouldn't, spends 80% of her time in the principals office- and outside of school, I was doing drugs and smoking cigarettes. Eventually I started finding ways to do those things in school as well. More things to be in trouble for. I was on the field hockey team and the track team, which my mom helped coach. SO that was kind of a motivator to stay out of trouble. And by stay out of trouble, I mean be more sneaky and try harder not to get caught. I would ride my bike to school in the morning and serve my detentions before school so they wouldn't interfere with track meets or field hockey games. (My mom refused to bring me to school to serve my detentions, so I had to ride my bike.)

My mom worked with a woman who owed and bred Morgans. So I started going there and mucking stalls and eventually taking lessons. I found out for the first time in my life, that there really was something out there that I could connect with. I could talk to the horses, and never did they judge me or my past. I always went to the farm sober because it is TERRIFYING being high around horses. And I felt good. I was sober, and I felt good. Horses gave me a different kind of high, and I quite liked it.

My senior year was a bit different than the rest. the principal had a talk with me on the first day. He said "Tax payers pay about $400 per hour- per student for you to be here. If you aren't going to learn, you aren't going to stay. ONE detention this year, and you will be expelled."

And that was that. I had to keep my nose clean. I paid attention in class, and I kept my mouth shut. I didn't do my homework, and I really didn't study much. I barely passed. But I didn't get in trouble. I graduated with my class- by the skin of my teeth. It was the first time in the history of my high school that our class started together as freshman and every one of us graduated together as seniors. We didn't have anyone come or go. 84 started, and 84 finished. I remember it being a big deal and the news did stories about it. I decided on the college I wanted to go to, and got accepted there. I got a few scholarships- based on my experiences and essays- not on my grades. I had to come up with $23k in 3 months.

I started working the Monday we got back from our class trip. We went to Six Flags, and Boston. Lots of fun!

I worked as a housekeeper at a motel that was close enough for me to ride my bike. On the weekends I was cleaning houses with my boyfriend's older sister, and at night I was waiting tables at a local restaurant with my Aunt. Those 3 months flew by, mostly because I was so sleep deprived and exhausted that I didn't really remember what had happened the day before. But it's what I had to do in order to go to the college I wanted to go to.

One of the biggest and best lessons that my mom ever taught me was that if there was anything I wanted in life, I had to work for it. Plus, when you work for things, the feeling of satisfaction that you have is awesome. It feels good to look back on life and know that I have no one to thank but myself.

In August of that year, I wrote a check for $23k. I had about $20 left over, but it felt good. I had a week before I had to be at school, so I slept. The whole week. Then, I was ready to start my next adventure- on my own for the first time ever.

"The barn taught me passion... Not the passion of winning-but rather the passion that you feel when you have nothing left but your love of something. The passion that is there when exhaustion steals your strength and frustration takes your hope."
Strawberry4Me is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 07-24-2014, 02:46 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Coastal Maine
Posts: 695
• Horses: 1
So, here I was. At college. I had no idea where to start, so I went through all the registration papers and went to this office and that office. Had my picture taken for my student ID, got a brief tour of the place. I saw where I needed to go to eat, and where the computer lab was, and where most of my classes would be. I picked up my class schedule and went to find my room. I moved my car load of things into my room, and after an hour or so had the pleasure of meeting my roommate. She was quiet, short dark hair and glasses. From the neck up she looked like a total geek, great. She was wearing what we referred to as a drug rug, and corduroy patch work pants. She had on a big hemp necklace with a large beautiful bead made of hand blown glass attached. She also only had a few things to unpack. Our parents and families found random things to talk about, including the weather, while Leigh and I said very few words to one another. We talked briefly about how we ended up being roommates, and how she'd tried to get a hold of me during the summer to make a plan to meet. Meanwhile, I was hanging out with this other girl whom I thought would be my roommate. She wasn't, and I was happy about that. She was nice enough, but we just didn't have much in common, and we spent far too much time trying to create a friendship based on nothing. So I was rather relieved to see a new face that day, even in its awkwardness.

Leigh was quiet and reserved. I was outgoing and outspoken. I wasn't sure the combination was great, but I was open minded enough to give her a shot. After all, the hemp necklace gave me hope. As soon as our families left, Leigh and I continued to unpack and small talk. Then, one tiny turn of events would change our relationship forever. "Do you drink?" she shyly asked me, as if I was afraid I was going to say no. "YES!" I am sure she could see the relief and excitement filling my body. Leigh pulled out a bottle of tequila, and we took a couple of shots. What a nice way to close that gap between two people who'd never met and now, all of a sudden were thrown together and expected to share a living space the size of a closet. It wasn't long before Leigh and I were outside smoking a joint together, half drunk. We poured our hearts out to each other. She talked about how much she hated being judged by the clothes she wore, and I assured her that I'd not done that.

I walked around campus, Leigh in tow, and made friends. When I say I made friends, I mean something along the lines of "hey! We're Sarah and Leigh- Nobody doesn't like Sarah-Lee! Can we be friends?" Leigh was happy I was dragging her around, because she just isn't as outgoing as I am. I was making friends for both of us. Some of the friends we made that night are still some of our closest friends. Some of the most amazing, strong and funny people I have ever had the opportunity to spend my time with. I am incredibly grateful for that drunken night, the first night of college, with my very first roommate ever.

Here is a picture of Leigh and I:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Sarah-Leigh.jpg (21.5 KB, 9 views)

"The barn taught me passion... Not the passion of winning-but rather the passion that you feel when you have nothing left but your love of something. The passion that is there when exhaustion steals your strength and frustration takes your hope."
Strawberry4Me is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hello my name is Sarah sarahhorsecrazy Meet the Community 5 08-13-2013 10:56 PM
RIP Sadie kim_angel Horse Memorials 11 09-28-2012 08:23 AM
Sadie came home! andimax Horse Talk 2 12-24-2011 09:46 PM
Sadie situation kim_angel Horse Talk 5 07-31-2009 07:01 AM
Remembering Sadie GeminiJumper Horse Pictures 12 06-13-2008 07:28 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome