On June 18th, my mother had a stroke. On June 24th she left us.
|My grampa holding me on the white pony, Fury and my mom holding my hand.|
|My mom's horse Princess as a yearling and me derping hard front and center, lol|
She grew up with horses as I did. Her parents always had many. My mom rode and trained many horses when she was younger. By the time I came along, she no longer rode much at all but ensured her daughters did.
She was a perfect show mom. Sewing western show clothing for my sister and I, making sure we were entered in every town fair we could drive to. She never tended to our horses at shows: even as a little girl I was responsible for unloading my pony and getting her settled in a stall, feeding, watering, grooming.
At home I was allowed to 'play' with the horses on my own from a very young age. Either hanging out in the pasture with the herd or taking my pony off on an adventure with my little backpack of snacks for the journey--my mom allowed us to learn horse behavior and discover how to stay safe independently.
Mom had a special connection to my horse Shiraz. Even as her dementia progressed and she could not always remember 'that brown horse's' name, she would tell people about how Shiraz would stand quietly and let her pet her nose endlessly.
My mom's passion for horses spilled over to me and all three of my sisters. She never forced us, but also never asked us if we wanted to have a horse or go to shows :) It was just a given; life in my family includes horses.