Growing up it was always a dream of mine to own a horse, and it only took me 15 years of begging to finally get one. So in 2005 when my mom told me to start looking for a horse I had to pinch myself because I didn’t believe what I was hearing. I had no idea what to look for because other than riding a hand full of ponies I had no experience with horses, but I started looking anyway in the hopes that when I found whatever it was I would just know.
My searching brought me to a boarding farm that was only a few miles from my house. There he stood, out in a pasture all by himself. When I walked up to the gate to look at him, the first thing I noticed was how skinny he was; he had no muscle tone at all. He was a dark bay in color but almost black with his winter coat. As I tried to imagine what he would look like during the summer I stopped to look at his face. He had a star that was shaped just like a snow angel and big brown eyes. He just looked at me, his expression so soft, so wise, and yet there was fear in his eyes. At the time I didn’t know what it meant but I would soon learn.
The owners took him out and helped me brush him and saddle him up, the whole time I watched to see how he reacted to me. When it came time to watch how he moved the owner took him in the middle of the arena on a lunge line and attempted to ask him to do circles. He quickly decided he didn’t want to do this and she quickly became frustrated, gave up and walked away. Leaving the horse standing alone again, and suddenly I saw where the fear came from. His fear was the fear of being abandoned. I walked out to him, looked him deep in his big brown eyes and told him it would be okay. I told him I am here now.
The next day I brought him home. The first couple of months were not easy ones. I had to teach him that he could trust me and that I really was going to show up every day to feed him and spend time with him. After I bout him I went back to the boarding facility to try to piece together what had happened to him during life. I learned he came from a farm in Tennessee where he was sold to someone who loaded him in a trailer and brought him to Texas to sell in an auction. This is where the other owners bought him and brought him to Michigan. Then he came to me.
After learning how much he bounced around I knew where his trust issues came from. He never really had an owner who stuck with him till the end. He couldn’t understand but for one reason or another they had all given up on him. I knew I had my work cut out for me with this horse, and knowing nothing about horses myself I didn’t know how to begin, but I was determined to prove to him that we could do this. And so starts the journey of “My Diamond in the Rough.” Be sure to read Part 2, and Part 3!