I believe life is full of lessons that affect the way we live our lives. I believe that the choices we make, whether it’s to ignore theses lesson or to learn from them, can have a large impact on our character. By helping others, you are also helping yourself. This is something I believe is true and a lesson learned that has changed who I am.
For the past six years I have invested a great deal of my time and hard work into a therapeutic riding center that aids in the therapy and treatment of the mentally and physically handicap. Because of my knowledge of horses I was thrilled to find that such a place existed. Being apart of this organization has given me the opportunity to change so many lives.
I don’t know exactly when I realized how special being involved with this center was to me. Maybe it was at the Special Olympics when a rider I had been working with for a few months won for the first time. When it was all over he gave me a big hug and sincerely thanked me for helping him finally find something he could do that made him happy. I had never felt the way I did then when I saw the smile that lit his face. Maybe it was the day that an eight year old autistic patient said her first words. She had never spoken and her parents hadn’t seen much progress since she had joined the program. In one of her regular afternoon sessions she began to giggle. The little girl turned and looked to her mother and exclaimed “Mommy watch me! Watch me!” Her mother was silent and I watched as her mothers eyes filled with tears. She ran to her daughter and they embraced. Just that moment proved to me that’s all my hard work had truly been worth it.
Theses patients have taught me so much about life. They have showed me the importance of helping others and have been a constant reminder of just how much I have to be thankful for. At the end of a long day they encourage me just as I do them and they always find a way to lift my spirits. All the work I do for this organization is volunteer and I could use my knowledge or horses elsewhere and make quite a bit of money. But the things I learn from my experiences with them and the memories I have made here are worth more than all the money in the world.
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