Monday, November 11, 2013

Why do we do this?

Photo: Lauren Edzenga
It is no secret that horses are humbling creatures, whether to simply be around, ride, compete, or do all of these as a career. They offer us our greatest dreams, but also deliver devastating heartbreak. Onlookers often consider horse people "crazy" for what we choose to do and endure for the sake of our passion, but to us passion is not even a grand enough word. There simply aren't words to describe the feelings of someone immersed in these animals. 

          Going through the ups and downs of this passion, and following this dream, takes a great toll on the emotions and body, but it also brings great rewards. These rewards may be large or small, and are different for every equestrian. Some of these great rewards are large victories, but many are small moments that fill your heart and bring you to life. Winning events is fabulous and encouraging, but the smaller moments leading up to that victory are what is truly important. Nailing that perfect lead change, finally getting a true extension, discovering lightness in the bridle, finding that perfect spot to every jump in your course, getting over that ditch, or through that sunken road.... these moments fuel the spark that keeps us entrenched in this dream.

Photo: Lauren Edzenga
           Despite the many setbacks we must endure to follow our dreams with horses, we become better people and better horsemen because of the nature of this lifestyle. The most important part of this lifestyle is the care and compassion for our animals. They are as much a part of who we are as family members and dearest friends. They mold and change our lives as we live them, and remind us constantly how fragile life and emotions are. So to answer the title question of why do we do it, if it is so taxing, exhausting and heart breaking? The answer is that if equestrian life is who you are, then you do it because you must. You do it because there is no other way to live than with your horses closest to your heart and first on your mind.

Photo: Lauren Edzenga

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