My dad put me on his big white horse Julius when I was still in diapers and I think that’s when I got the ‘sickness’. My young heart was broken when I was told Julius ran away. But I remember seeing him on a corner when we were driving in the country. “Look Dad! There he is!” I was told that wasn’t him. That was the last time I touched a horse for a long, long time. I collected horse figurines as a young girl and when we had a house fire, the ‘horse thing’ was left behind. Over the years I occasionally enjoyed trail rides but never had training or the opportunity to ride regularly.
I had been working on personal growth as my children were growing up. I wanted to become my best and when they were grown and out of school I explored what I might be interested in doing with my time. I ran up and down the hall of opportunity and looked through all the doors that interested me. I visited some desires and nothing really stuck. After seeing the movie ‘The Secret’, I was at a business meeting and wrote on an index card “I want horses in my life” as an exercise. I had been talking to friends about how I had set my intention, requested my desire and let it go to let God work on fulfilling my prayer. It was suggested to me that I talk to a man I was familiar with at Bristol Renaissance Faire, one of my other passions. I was told his wife had a horse rescue. Six months later the card was sent back to me and I had just met Deb & Jennifer. I have been there ever since. That was 4 1/2 yrs ago. They are like sisters to me and I love and respect them with all my heart.
My experience with the horses has been wonderful. I love to talk to them, sing to them, spend time with them. I spent the earliest time at the rescue washing water buckets and scooping poop in Honor and Haven’s area. Since they were very skiddish, due to the extreme abuse they had suffered before they came to us, I would simply go into their area with my garbage can and fork and begin working. They learned to trust me and would occasionally come over to see what I was doing. I love the quiet of the farm. The smell of the barn. I spend a little more than a half hour driving there, out in the country. It’s a good God time. I pray to God for the rescue, the friends & animals that I love. I tap into such a deep place of gratitude that by the time I get to the farm I am in a wonderful state of mind.
The horses have touched me very deeply. I feel such sadness at times when I am near them. Sometimes just a peaceful contentedness. There are so many stories of where they came from and what they’ve been through. I just want to give them love. I don’t bring treats because I would have to give ‘everyone’ some and that would be an overwhelming task. At present there are around fifty horses, not to mention five goats, three pigs and some chickens. My heart loves each and every one of them. They make me laugh and feel joy. We miss the friends who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge and remember them and the good memories they brought us.
I have learned to be a part of something bigger than myself. Helping Jen & Deb is very important to me. Not just physically at the farm, cleaning buckets, etc. but to encourage them. To tell them how special and important they are. Not just to the animals but to me and so many others. When we started Holy Crap Fellowship, it met a need that we all had. To bring God into the picture in a greater way. We find encouragement and offer support to one another and learn more about God’s love for us. I am so thankful to say that we are all growing in every way and the rescue will benefit from that. We learn to work together in spite of differences and make compromises in order to keep the rescue going. It’s just how it is.
I am thankful for the opportunity to share my experience and Destination Safe Haven with anyone who will listen. I have been known to talk too much in my life, but I figure since I talk about good things, great things, like the rescue and the women who are my heroes, people can just put up with it. And they do. I don’t know what would be filling my time if I wasn’t a part of DSH. I am just thankful to have this opportunity to serve such wonderful people and animals.