Some Horses Will Test You – Some Will Teach You
It’s always a gorgeous day at Oak Haven Acres. I spend most of my time here because it’s my happy place (and the horses). I don’t see it as coming to work, because I love what I do. There are some days I am tired, but I must remind myself how lucky I am to work with such amazing animals. My chosen career is not a job; it’s more of a calling.
Horses are my life, and nothing thrills me more than to see them happy and flourishing. I look back on the numerous years that I have worked with equines, and I must chuckle. I have accomplished great things. We’ve nursed many horses back to health, and we have helped to build friendships with the skittish, wild, and even out of control animals. However, reflecting on things brings me to a great understanding; it’s not what I have taught them, but it’s what they have taught me that is so Magnificent. Here are a few things I have learned from my years with equines.
Compared to the size of a horse, I am quite small. Since the average horse is over 6-foot-tall and 2,000 pounds, I am a mere spec next to them. However, if I wasn’t daring, I couldn’t do my job. I manipulate and train them. It’s quite a duty to get an equine to do what you want; they can be just as stubborn as a child. So, I am more confident in my abilities because of them. They taught me to have the courage and push through barriers beyond my comfort zone.
Anyone can get a job where there are sick days and vacation days aplenty. However, I can’t call off for any old reason. I must keep going because these animals depend on me. Forget being sick or lazy as I must show accountability. They need me to be here and be active in their life.
You may not realize that this larger than life animal has a tiny brain. Getting them to understand what I want isn’t always an easy task. I must have their trust before I can teach them anything. They can become aggressive and react negatively if I expect too much. I must be patient and wait until they are ready before I can transition them.
4. To Be Aware Of My Surroundings
To deal with horses is no easy task. Some people make it seem so easy, but things don’t always go as planned. Remember, nothing works all the time. I know most of the horses well, which means I know how they react. However, there is always something that can come along and spook them, and then all bets are off. I must always be sharp and know what’s going on because these animals are quite large and can inflict injury without ever meaning to. Being aware of your surroundings is a good thing in all aspects of life.
When I gaze into the eyes of a majestic being like the horse, I am reminded of how awesome Mother Nature is and how small I am in contrast. I may try a task with one horse, and it works perfectly, and I feel on top of the world. Consequently, I can try the same task with another equine, and it fails miserably. Though I try to understand them and gauge their every move, I realize that I really know so little. They teach me many life lessons on humility. I grew up with the mentality that if I worked hard, I could have what I wanted, but then the horses show me that no matter how hard I’ve worked, they are still in charge.
6. To Control My Emotions
Horses are very perceptive animals. They learn these techniques in the wild to protect themselves. If I am near them and have a meltdown, they will react to my emotions. Some horses are more sensitive than others. While some need a stern tone and me to take a dictator role, others would never respond to that attitude. I must always be sure that I keep my emotions in check. If I would cry, yell, scream, or have some other outburst, it could cause them to react negatively. No matter what I am facing in my personal life or on the job, I leave my baggage at the gate when dealing with these precious animals.
I am a better person for every equine that I have met. They have taught me bravery, to be driven, and to live each day to the fullest. What have you learned from being around horses? They are masters at teaching us lessons about life without ever opening their mouths. I always say my best friends never speak a word, yet they say so much. To view more about Oak Haven Acres, read our story!