Horses! Who are my horse-loving friends?

PONIES! Yes! I've been crazy about them since age 4! From age 9 to 49, I kept two horses in my backyard where I cared for them nearly every day. I often enjoyed trail-riding them through the nearby woods. Nothing too fancy and yet they also saved my sanity. When around horses, I had to stay 'in tune' with what they were thinking and feeling in the present moment. This enabled me to at least forget about my emotional suffering for awhile every day.

The communication that I'd experienced with horses was unlike any other. When riding, I could feel my horse's apprehension in his shortened foot steps, his side-stepping, neck tension, bit chomping, breathing and trembling. At other times, his disagreement was apparent with his excessive head tossing, tail swatting and lowering of his rump. What I'm trying to point out here is that, I was always reading my horse's body-movements, gestures and muscle tension and in that sense the communication was immediate and always there. I only had to learn how to read it.

At age 16, I purchased my favorite gelding and kept him in my backyard for 33 years until I had to endure the heartbreak of putting him down. Yet there's a good and perhaps, not so good aspect to my life with horses. Though these horses had given me the reason I needed to make it though my deepest depression at age 20, they also likely kept me home-bound. I felt I couldn't have emotionally survived without my favorite gelding. My human relationships were then greatly dysfunctional while my own difficulties had lead me to believe that I had no other options.
 

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
PONIES! Yes! I've been crazy about them since age 4! From age 9 to 49, I kept two horses in my backyard where I cared for them nearly every day. I often enjoyed trail-riding them through the nearby woods. Nothing too fancy and yet they also saved my sanity. When around horses, I had to stay 'in tune' with what they were thinking and feeling in the present moment. This enabled me to at least forget about my emotional suffering for awhile every day.

The communication that I'd experienced with horses was unlike any other. When riding, I could feel my horse's apprehension in his shortened foot steps, his side-stepping, neck tension, bit chomping, breathing and trembling. At other times, his disagreement was apparent with his excessive head tossing, tail swatting and lowering of his rump. What I'm trying to point out here is that, I was always reading my horse's body-movements, gestures and muscle tension and in that sense the communication was immediate and always there. I only had to learn how to read it.
It’s one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever read about horses. It is true that somehow, it is possible to read them neutrally as another being and not as some person who might have a problem with you. The way you describe it is lovely and accurate at the same time.

At age 16, I purchased my favorite gelding and kept him in my backyard for 33 years until I had to endure the heartbreak of putting him down. Yet there's a good and perhaps, not so good aspect to my life with horses. Though these horses had given me the reason I needed to making it though my deepest depression at age 20, they also likely kept me home-bound. I felt I couldn't have emotionally survived without my favorite gelding. My human relationships were then greatly dysfunctional while my own difficulties had lead me to believe that I had no other options.
I am sorry you have experienced this in this way. Hope you’ll find yourself good and free.
 

Eagle3

MyPTSD Pro
I've loved horses since birth practically, and as a kid often traded barn chores for riding lessons in NE OK. I've done lots of volunteering at therapeutic riding stables over the years. The last 2 years I've been working for pay with therapeutic riding horses and loving every minute of it, but was let go due to physical issues. Now that I have no income again, I can't spend as much time at the barn as I used to, but I still try to go at least once a week to pitch in wherever they need help and see my babies. Nothing like the nickers of horses happy to see you!! That job helped me be emotionally stable, and now that I don't have it I'm floundering again, but going out there and being with the horses, even if I'm not getting paid for it anymore, is a small bright spot in my life. Hopefully one day I can become a regular out there again, maybe even a paying customer in the program!
 
It’s one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever read about horses. It is true that somehow, it is possible to read them neutrally as another being and not as some person who might have a problem with you. The way you describe it is lovely and accurate at the same time.


I am sorry you have experienced this in this way. Hope you’ll find yourself good and free.
Thank you @ruborcoraxxx I'm glad that you understand what I was trying to explain and can appreciate these amazingly beautiful creatures, as I do!
 

Freida

Sponsor
I had never really been around horses as a kid, so when my t told me she was sending me to an equine program for vets with ptsd I had no idea what to expect

I certainly didn't expect it to be life changing! 😁

After I finished the program I stayed on as a volunteer and I love, love, love being up there. It has been an amazing experience that has done wonders for me and my ability to interact with people
 

NotTooLate

Confident
I had never really been around horses as a kid, so when my t told me she was sending me to an equine program for vets with ptsd I had no idea what to expect

I certainly didn't expect it to be life changing! 😁

After I finished the program I stayed on as a volunteer and I love, love, love being up there. It has been an amazing experience that has done wonders for me and my ability to interact with people
That's so awesome! I'm so glad you were able to be a part of the program. Horses are the best!
I was going to work at an equine therapy center as the head manager of the horse side, but we moved before they had a chance to get the program started. I always wanted to do something like that for vets, victims of domestic abuse and children with trauma, but I struggle taking care of myself and would need a very solid partner to get the program up and running. Who knows, maybe it'll happen someday. 🐎

I have two drafts and they are my loves. Time spent with them and the dogs is the best therapy!
OMG! I wish I could have a draft. They are so amazing with their massive strength and gentle souls 💕
Do you ride them at all?

I've loved horses since birth practically, and as a kid often traded barn chores for riding lessons in NE OK. I've done lots of volunteering at therapeutic riding stables over the years. The last 2 years I've been working for pay with therapeutic riding horses and loving every minute of it, but was let go due to physical issues. Now that I have no income again, I can't spend as much time at the barn as I used to, but I still try to go at least once a week to pitch in wherever they need help and see my babies. Nothing like the nickers of horses happy to see you!! That job helped me be emotionally stable, and now that I don't have it I'm floundering again, but going out there and being with the horses, even if I'm not getting paid for it anymore, is a small bright spot in my life. Hopefully one day I can become a regular out there again, maybe even a paying customer in the program!
Oh, I hope you are able to get back at it more regularly! I can't imagine how much floundering I would be doing if I didn't have my boys. I'm sure working at the therapeutic riding stables is rewarding and gives a great sense of purpose. That would be great to go through a program, too!
 

intothelight

Moderator
@NotTooLate I can ride the drafts, but they are definitely for trails and will walk forever. They are both rescues, with the spotted draft being "loved to death" and 400lbs overweight when I got him and my Perch had been left without his feet being done for six years. His one hoof was so abscessed and bad, the vet and farrier thought he might walk out of it. Right now I am treating him for laminitis and that is scary. He is on stall rest for his second week and is improving, and at least his stance is more normal at this point. I've had my Perch for 18 mos and it is crazy what people do to horses, but I'll get him fixed up. Here is a pic from earlier this Fall.

The boys.jpg
 

Friday

Moderator
What vet school???? 🤔
LOL... at this point I have no idea, as it was going on 20 years ago, and just 1 quarter out of 2-4 years of schooling. Through one of the universities. A selling point, to be sure, but nothing branded into me’ brains. I just remember it was across the border into bluegrass & bluebloods.

TBH, I don’t event remember the name of the Trainers & Farriers school in West Virginia. Just where it was, and that it had been one of four I’d been considering. For a long time, when I closed a chapter on my life? I locked it and tossed the key.
 
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