Horses Can Heal

Haley - Silver Bay, Minnesota
Entered on December 6, 2009
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I believe in my horse. Ever since I can remember I have loved horses. I can remember going on road trips and counting all the horses I saw along the way and that special feeling I would get just from seeing one. Everyday I look forward to walking out to my barn and seeing my horse run up to the gate to greet me, and I am just as excited to greet her. I believe in the way she makes me work for her affection. I purchased my horse Spirit on July 30, 2005. I wish I would have known she was going to make such a huge impact on my life and she would change me for the better. I love everything about her, from her smell to her own personality. She is a beautiful light brown with an almost all white face. Her name says it all “Spirit.” She is so full of life and she is just happy to have my attention.

I have had grief issues in the past and never really knew how to deal with them. I lost my dad at a young age, he died of a massive heart attack when I was 12. Ever since that day I couldn’t control my emotions. I was all over the place: hated people, hated life, and hated myself. I was having problems in school, my grades had fallen. I could not seem to get along with my mom or my sister, I argued with them about the simplest things not understanding that they just cared. I struggled constantly, fought with everyone and everything. I couldn’t deal with the facts of life and the only thing I loved and had was horses.

My horse has helped me change many of these things. She has taught me patience and control. I believe she reacts to me based on the emotional signals I give off. She doesn’t take any non-sense from me. She knows when I am being authentic or lying to myself. She responds accordingly, by showing interest and support or perhaps by turning her back on me. She will give me just as much attitude as I am giving her and keeps up the fight until I put my guard down. I have trained her myself and she has made me stronger by doing so. She has tested me and taught me along the way. She has helped me define who I am and what my purpose might be.

I believe my dad would be so proud of me for having such a defining friend. I thank her everyday for her lasting impression on me. I believe she has helped sculpt me and she has filled a void that was much needed in my life. I believe in her loyalty, and how she lives her life in the present. Now, instead of her wanting and striving to please me, I am looking for her approval and acceptance as well. I believe horses can heal.