May 1, 2021
Horses are Healers
Written By: Trish W - BITS Participant
|My name is Trish. I have been fortunate to have witnessed how horses can transform and heal us. They teach us kindness, respect, empathy and courage, all by their example.|
When I was 13 years old, I was afraid of horses and of heights. My parents gave me one month of riding lessons to try to help. The teacher said I was so scared I turned green, but I would not give up. The Phillips School of Riding in Bellaire, Texas was a small independent barn. Our school horses were a very eclectic group exhibiting in their ranks probably every mix of breed, quirk, bad habit and oddity that one could imagine. The collection of those horses provided an incredibly rich source of learning and experience, and I believe they led to my success as a rider.
I worked at the barn before and after school to pay for my lessons. This was a wonderful way to gain experience by being around and learning from the horses. These were incredible chances for me to grow, gain confidence and understand the nature of these wonderful beings. Their uncomplicated HONESTY allows trust to build…They make clear their boundaries. And we gain a LOT by nonverbally learning to understand, respond and influence. Very much like with the people we meet, all are different.
For me, that time has been the most important formative event in my life. Slowly I learned to face my fear. I learned to accept it and to learn from it. Many times, before I would go in the show ring or ride some new horse, I would feel doubt and would face it. I loved the horses, I wanted to ride, and I had to go forward.
Eventually, Belle Star (Izmal), pictured, and I rode for the Craft family of Houston. She won a position as a Top Ten in Half Arabian Performance in the Nationals at Albuquerque!!
Now I am back after many years and thrilled to be Back in the Saddle. Skittles and I are still kind of new to each other. I know he will teach me how to get back to that wonderful connection between of horse and rider. Once more, horses will bring me back to that sense of calm and order that is timeless and precious. When I come to TROT I always feel energized and look forward to the experience. My teacher, Dora, is GREAT! She is both knowledgeable and articulate. She has a lot of skill and understanding about people and horses. She has helped me gain self-confidence by accepting that I have limitations but they don’t diminish me. I have learned a lot from her in a short time and have enjoyed every minute.
Everyone I have met at TROT is smiling. It is a nurturing place and is tended by nice people who want to help each of us succeed. I feel safe here. The teachers combine learning to ride with exercises and moving in new ways. We can feel the horses response to our weight and posture, and we use that experience while moving in our daily lives. The therapeutic programs at TROT are designed to help people of all ages and experiences. I have a huge amount of respect and gratitude for the chance to work with them.
– BITS Participant