P gets stressed at the thought of homework building up, forms that need to be signed and bags that need packing for the next school day - which is a sad state to be in when you are 9 years old. I knew as soon as I saw her, as she wearily left the classroom, that she was unhappy; there were 50 multiplication sums and 10 spelling sentences to do for the next day. P can't think, or process, or have fun, until the pesky school work is completed.
I persuaded her to trot around for 10 minutes on Spot who enjoys a little jolly. She rides well, little P, but I can see she doesn't always enjoy it. After a cajoled canter, I built a teeny, weeny, tiny jump.
Go on I said. You can do it. And she did! Quite spectacularly. Twice in fact.
She grinned, I praised her and hugged the pony for being so honest.
"How was that?" I asked
She thought for a moment and considered her answer.
"When you go over the jump it was like there was a big hammer, hammering down my homework into the jump!"
Wow I replied. How does that make you feel?
"Like an angel lived inside me" she said, flooring me with her reply.
My 9 year old daughter had just explained how horses made me feel. No matter how life is turning out, how blue my day has been or desperately unhappy I felt; when I am near horses, it's like an angel lives inside me and nothing else matters.
To the horse who put the angel inside me:
Rest in Peace Mr Fletcher, thank you for teaching me, for allowing me to feel, for your free spirit and wild ways. I will never, ever forget you. Run free you crazy ginger beastie and I'll see you on the other side for a mad gallop.
Fletch, who rekindled my love of horses, put to sleep this week