Yesterday was my first, long-awaited ride of the year. Granted, it was only the 6th, but it had been exactly four weeks since last I rode. For a long-time horsaholic, like myself, trust me it is about the longest a break can last.
The longest I did go without riding was when I was pregnant with my children. And I only stopped because although I could still get on my horse, getting off posed rather an interesting dilemma; once my feet were out of the stirrups and both legs were on the same side of the horse…well…the slide didn’t happen because the belly got stuck! So with nr 1 I had to stop at around 30 weeks and with nr 2 quite a bit earlier. Number 1 was hardly three weeks old and I was back in the saddle. I did get a bit of a stern look from the gyne, so with nr two I waited a little longer – but that was only because I was a little bit preoccupied with the trauma of my new baby being in NICU. But I digress.
So today, I am sitting in my office staring out the window (being utterly unproductive) at the seductively bright sunshine and a soft breeze tickling the trees. I do not want to be here. I want to be outside. Riding.
When I arrived at the farm yesterday, my ride came up to the gate to greet me, whereas the last few times I had been there, we were playing games of “Catch me if you can”. It was nice to feel that I had been missed. There are few things more heart warming than the low, soft nicker emerging from deep inside a 800kg body and being let out through quivering, velvety nostrils. A big, hairy head resting softly against your chest, warm breath on your cheeks, soft lips exploring your fingers for one last bite of carrot or apple…
As soon as my backside hit the saddle and my legs wrapped snugly around the barrel of my white steed, my body said: “aahhh, this is home.” and my soul sighed pleasurably. Today there is a slight twinge in my thighs of muscles that have had a short hiatus from working. It makes me smile. It feels good. It makes me want more.
For more than a year now, since losing my little girl, I have been trying hard to be a horseless person. I have tried to redefine who I am. To be normal. But alas, I am not. I am horsey and there is nothing to be done about it. It is an addiction, it is a disease and it is incurable.