Freedom My First Horse Part 1: The Start

I have taken a while to get to the topic of horses on here. Shocking for most people who know me. I think they might have doubted I actually own this site until now.


I must of course start at the beginning.


I have...wait. My parents have my 3rd-grade teachers to blame for sparking a flame in my beating little heart. I remember my favorite animal used to be cats before a pivotal event (which is ironic because while cats are cool I am allergic to them). My memory is incredible for the most random things. The only reason I know this event was the catalyst to years of my parents running around terrified outside their own house from horses is that I remember I was making a calendar for my parents. Each month we had to make a drawing. All students were to make one then watch a movie and I was one of the last to finish. We were going to watch "some movie". I remember thinking oh it is just a movie this calendar is more important "my parents will have the best calendar ever!"


Had I loved horses back then, I would for damn sure have been the first finished and the first to get right in front and center of the movie they were showing in the classroom over The Black Stallion. I am sure my father would agree that the calendar would also be a rushed stick figure scribble of low quality hehe...


I only watched half of the movie. All remember was how amazing the bond between the boy and his horse was. I wanted that.


I wanted a horse.


My poor parents. *whistles*


I remember them driving around trying to find a stable for me have lessons at. This was in Arizona...in Lake Havasu...in the summer...without GPS. We never did find the stables. Or did they just drive around until I fell asleep from sheer exhaustion? I know you are reading this Dad...Mom? I do remember it being a very...very...very loooong drive for all of us.


Anyway. We ended up moving to the Philippines not too long after "the discovery". My mom and her family had some farmland. Plus horses and caring for them over there was more feasible.


There was a lot going on when we moved over there. Don't get me started on how behind in Math I was. Then these new languages I had to learn without help?! Grade 5 level Filipino here we go! MABUHAY! (long live!/good wishes).


Somehow. I don't know what gave my parents the idea. I mean, I only mentioned horses like 5450 times a day. I wasn't specifically asking for a horse. I just studied horsemanship and loved sharing my newfound knowledge with anyone within earshot. Somehow my parents got the idea to get a horse. They bought a weanling from a relative but were going to wait till she was ready to be separated from her mother. They did let us meet while she was 5 months old. I remember seeing her.


She was small and brown.


Now. If you have not seen the movie "The Black Stallion"...or " The Black Stallion 2" ...or "Black Beauty". Maybe you wouldn't be as disappointed as me. I may have been a bit of a brat at that age. I was 11 OK! Cut me a tiny bit of slack...but too not much. I may have been expecting this:


Instead, I got a small brown untrained. Keyword. UNTRAINED filly. She did come with a rope. No saddle, no halter. Nobody to go up to and say. Hey...help? Except for an uncle who didn't speak English and was OK-ish with horses. My parents were like. You asked for a horse. Here you go.




I will admit it didn't take long for the reality to hit. I was getting a horse. I loved her already. I spent every moment in Filipino class daydreaming of how much fun we would have galloping around and spent days thinking of a name for her. I would write furiously in my notebook all the names and made-up stories. My Filipino teachers probably thought I was taking notes furiously as no one ever reprimanded me. I settled on Freedom. I loved the sound of it and it is what horses symbolize.


When we got her. I was so excited! I think I was in shock.


She, however, was not interested in me at all but she was handling the separation from her mother pretty well. Actually looking back, really well. Nothing like Frisky. She just seemed aloof and disinterested. She munched on grass all day long. That was as exciting as it got. I even tried the scene from the Black Stallion feeding: the boy feeding the horse. Nope. My grass was completely ignored.


Back then and still sometimes they kept the ropes on the horse's neck versus a halter (unless it was a stallion which I found out why later *coughHidalgocough*). The horses would be tied to a stake in the ground or a tree and then moved around throughout the day. Very different from how horses are kept here and in most places. She was also headshy. I don't know why, maybe it was just her personality. She did not enjoy her shoulders, neck or face being touched.


This means she was more comfortable and completely fine with me approaching her from her hindquarters which is not typical and against everything I read. Versus approaching her from the front. And she never threatened me she wasn't in a defensive disrespectful stance. Looking back. At the time I was just plain naive. She may have even felt I was insecure and was not a threat but weirded out that I was soooo interested in her compared to the other two-legged beings.


She literally was like. Talk to the bum first, please. So there I was 11 years old walking up to a horse's bum and patting it. *facepalm* Then, I gradually worked my way forward from there over time to where I could touch her neck which was a big thing for her, and then her face. It took a few months to get to the point where we were both comfortable with each other. I had no clue what I was doing so I was a bit skittish too with her face because I could tell she didn't prefer it and was worried she would bite but she never did.


Note: As you probably know, but just in case. Don't approach a horse from the rear especially if they don't know you, you don't know them kind of situation. Horses are wonderful creatures but they are also very powerful. I really think I just got lucky and had an oddball kind easy going horse.


My dreams of galloping were harder to make a reality than I thought. With no saddle and an untrained horse. Then me... whose only experience riding was hours on a kiddie ride and playing Barbie's Riding Club on my computer.


You can only imagine.





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