We took Lauryn horse-back riding for her birthday. Her birthday was in September….she started talking about wanting to ride a horse back in March.
We arrived at the stables in Cooper Hill, TN and she was super excited. It was a gorgeous day and an idyllic setting, and Lauryn was spilling over with excited chatter.
Then we saw the horses. She got a little quiet then. Those horses were big. Super big. Our trail guide hoisted Lauryn up in the saddle, and the look on her face shifted from excited to utterly terrified. She was slowly turning white, and my husband and I are giving each other knowing glances and throwing her our best platitudes. “You look so great up there! What a cowgirl! You’re doing amazing!” It was time to unhitch the horse from it’s post, and I could see the tears trying to well up in her eyes. She had gotten more than she bargained for. This was no little pony, and she was feeling intimidated and scared. She was in that saddle all by herself, and she had a choice to make. Face the fear…or retreat to the sidelines and miss the ride.
We watched her tense little body with baited breath to see what she would do. And she totally fought through that fear. She squared her jaw, pulled the reign, and kicked her heels.
There were a few scary moments for her on the trail, when she panicked and forgot the instruction from her trail guide about how to control her horse, but she stuck with it. By the end of the trail ride she was relaxed, laughing, and feeling like a pro. I was SO. PROUD. OF. HER.
She fought thru the fear and had the ride of her life. Y’all….that’ll preach.