BY INTERN EMMY DOLIN
When I was 13 years old, I thought I had found my heart horse. Little did I know, my real heart horse was waiting in my future.
My family and I were at Lamplight Equestrian Center, and we were planning for me to try a pony. When I met him, his name was Pirate but we later named him Junior. I hacked Junior around, jumped a few times, and instantly fell in love with him. He was so perfect, and we were a great match. I remember telling my parents and my trainer, “I think I can get a lot of things done on this horse.”
We ended up bringing Junior back home, and took some time to get used to each other. As time went on, our bond got tighter. But when we went to our first show, he started refusing. After the show, he refused more.
I pushed through the frustration, and eventually we got reserve champion at a summer show. By that point, I had fallen off so many times due to his bucking. Earning that reserve champion ribbon symbolized my perseverance.
Even with his issues, Junior and I were such good friends, especially because I saw him everyday. When I found out we had to sell him, I was devastated. I had outgrown him, and it was just time for me to move up. The day before we sold Junior, I cried so much about selling the horse I thought was my heart horse. I spent about 7 hours with him before he left. I figured that we had to sell him for a good reason, and I kept telling myself that this was experience for my riding.
After a long adventure of trying horses, I finally found Harvey — the perfect partner for me. I couldn’t imagine where I would be if I didn’t come across him. He makes me smile every time I see him, and we constantly are looking out for each other. I realize now that Harvey is my true heart horse, and I couldn’t ask for a better one.
This Valentine’s Day, make sure to spend some time with your heart horse, just like I will with mine.