Yesterday morning, before sunrise,
I headed to the barn for morning chores.
Cleaning stalls, dry lots, and chicken houses...
feeding horses, cats, chickens, ducks...
changing water buckets, cleaning water tubs...
by the time I was half way through my list of chores,
the sun was rising on the horizon.
The oranges and pinks were soon replaced by a beautiful blue-skied autumn day.
It was the perfect day for an adventure.
And that was just what we had planned for the day.
Moonbeam and I were going to hitch a ride in Dr. Becky's trailer with Sid
and set out for a trail ride about 30 minutes away
at a beautiful place nestled at the base of the mountains
called Camp Hebron.
Here we would join about 25 other riders for a two hour ride up the mountain,
through the woods,
around a lake...
through all sorts of terrain.
What is remarkable about this trip, though,
is that it was Moonbeam's first time leaving the farm since his arrival
four years ago.
It was the first time he has loaded onto a trailer in all that time.
And I must say he did so in a most gentlemanly fashion.
Because it was his first public ride, I had a friend, who is a much better rider than I,
ride him and I rode one of the camp's horses.
My horse was a small fellow...
much easier to keep between my legs than my portly haflinger, Moonbeam!
You see, riding Moonbeam has been an adventure in itself...
one that I had just returned to several weeks ago
after a lengthy hiatus following a fall and an injury.
Fear can be quite paralyzing, you know.
For the longest time I came up with any excuse I could find to avoid riding....
fearful of injury.
I routinely talked myself out of riding,
telling myself how busy I was and how important all of those tasks were.
After all, wouldn't riding be frivolous when the "to-do" list was so long?
What a silly game I played with myself!
And then one day something changed.
I have no idea what it was...
except for the sudden realization that fear was the only thing standing between
Moonbeam and I...
and fear is not something tangible,
but a mental edifice built from intangibles...
the "what-ifs" that rarely ever happen.
And so I decided it was time to chip away at that edifice.
With each ride since that pivotal day I have become more and more
The fear has melted away and been replaced with the joy of
feeling my friend beneath me...
carrying me through one adventure after another!
Yesterday's ride was a huge success.
Moonbeam was willing and well behaved.
The horse I rode increased my confidence level as we
walked and trot and even ran through the forest together.
It was another turning point for me.
There is no turning back now...
My fear is behind me.
What lies ahead for me are more and more adventures
with my trustworthy friend
Ps....I took my camera along, but got so involved in riding that I did not take pictures.
Luckily there were camp workers taking pictures at spots along the trail,
so when those pictures are ready, I will post a few for you.