The end of the ride

EQUUS - - Letters -

Mary Lynne Car­pen­ter’s ar­ti­cle “The Next Jour­ney” (True Tale, EQUUS 490) touched my heart be­cause I am right where she is in my lifelong love af­fair with horses. I have re­tired my 24-year-old mare, Candy, from riding, and at 72, with no im­me­di­ate fam­ily to look af­ter me if I get hurt, I ad­mit I no longer have the con­fi­dence to break in a new trail part­ner. Candy has a home with me for the rest of her life, and I hope to en­joy her com­pany for many years to come. I’ll miss riding, but I have so many won­der­ful memories of bliss­ful days on the trails with my beloved horses. I have found peace in the say­ing, “Don’t be sad it’s over. Be grate­ful it hap­pened.” Nancy Christie Win­ston-Salem, North Carolina Next Jour­ney." Mary Thank Lynne Car­pen­ter you for beau­ti­fully “The ex­presses the strug­gle of fac­ing the end of not only a beloved horse, but also the end of one's horse-keep­ing life. I, too, am fac­ing the end of my beloved mare's life. She is my last horse at home and likely the last I will own. Like Mary and Bear, we have grown to­gether over time years as we have chal­lenged our skills and worked to build a trust­ing re­la­tion­ship. Know­ing that the end of this de­light­ful jour­ney is near makes ev­ery ma­nure-muck­ing, hoof-pick­ing, fencecheck­ing, bale-open­ing, treat-giv­ing minute bit­ter­sweet.

Car­pen­ter’s fi­nal sen­tence sums it up so well: “Of all the places my horse and I have gone to­gether, this re­tire­ment jour­ney might be the one for which I need the most courage.” We’re not sure what life will look like with­out our horses, but may we rise to meet this chal­lenge, too. Our horse life might just have given us the very skills nec­es­sary to meet this un­known. Walk on! Jen­nifer White Mon­te­v­ideo, Min­nesota

Write to Let­ters, EQUUS, P.O. Box 7510, Falls Church, Vir­ginia 22040; email: EQLet­ters@aim­me­ Please in­clude your ad­dress and tele­phone num­ber. Call 800-829-5910 for sub­scrip­tion ques­tions.

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