We call ourselves the Trinity, me, E and K, bonded around our horses and our hopes for them, our hopes for ourselves as riders, our hopes for our lives. Often a simple kinship springs up between horse people, but we blew past that quickly, into something profoundly deeper, into the place where you tell the truth about your emotional investment in your horse, the fears or frustrations you deal with, the progress and the setbacks. We all turn to our horses so we can cope with our lives, with the pressures we have in common and the ones that are unique to each of us.
Things have been building in all of our lives over the winter, and though we try to get together every Sunday, this was the one that turned into a Trinity summit. We had a group implosion of the best kind. E turned 30 today, so we all met at the barn to take her out for her birthday. First, we did an in-hand session with Dar, E working with him while K and I watched her, learning. Afterward, we went to lunch, and there was very little horse talk during that, just lots of personal stuff. It was during the drive back to the barn that the floodgates opened. We sat in K's car for two hours, laying it all out, really working our hands into the muck of our horse lives. How to make it work, how to make it work. Give and take, trade-offs, pulling in the same harness toward variations of the same goal. Many tears and much laughter. Plans: If this, then that. If that, then this. It's all out in the open now between us. No more hesitating because something might be embarrassing, something might be so difficult to imagine. We all want to keep our horses, and we all know it will be hard, but not impossible if we work together.
E said, "This is the best birthday I've ever had."