A friend of a friend, of a friend, came to the farm this morning. In other words, I had no idea who these people were or why they were here. All of that would change very quickly. She brought her 5 year old son to see the horses and ponies. He was awe struck, as he had never seen miniature horses before. He came dressed in cowboy attire down to the chaps and plastic holster. It was very important for him to know each horse’s name. As we wandered the pasture, the donkeys were right behind us doing their job of protecting the fields. The horses love it when “little people” aka kids come to visit. I think they feel more comfortable with kids simply because the kids don’t tower over them. Adam standing eye to eye with the horses would rub their noses and begin to talk to them. He would move from horse to horse and quickly decide if this was the horse that deserved his undivided attention. Finally, standing and petting TT, he decided she was the one. TT is an older mare that is blind in one eye. Her vision loss makes her a little shy but, after seeing the other horses get attention she had slowly made her way to the young boy. “You and me we will ride. I will feed you corn and pepsi, and we will ride”, Adam talked softly and TT stood and stared as if in agreement. “I’m a cowboy”, he squealed looking back at his mom.
“He has such an active imagination,” he mother replied. I just stood smiling and listening. He went on to tell TT how he would take her to his school and if the kids were nice they could ride her too. “If they are mean, they can’t ride.” I know it sounds crazy, but I swear TT knodded her head in agreement.
I guess when you have kids of your own, you learn to hear the important things and block out “normal everyday” stuff. His mom wasn’t really paying attention to his conversation with TT, while I was hanging on his every word (the non-mom in me). “I am sure he will tell everyone that he is a real cowboy now”, his mom said with a slight smile. I wanted to shush her so that I didn’t miss the conversation between Adam and TT. I held my tongue and just grinned at her quickly. Turning my attention back to the bond that was forming right in front of me.
Adam would have talked to TT all afternoon but his mother had a lunch appointment. She pulled him away from TT crying. I was tearing up too and we walked to their car. “He’ll talk about this for months”, she said as he was screaming. “I want TT.” TT wants you too I wanted to tell him but I figured I had better once again hold my tongue. I was getting as distraught as Adam. I would have time to cry after they left.
When their car was pulling out of the gate, I realized that I had just been taught important life lessons from a 5 year old cowboy and a 18 year old miniature horse.
Kids could teach adults a lot if we would just stop, watch, and listen.
Lesson 1: When we enter the pasture of life no matter how big and scary be determined to make a difference and a friend.
Lesson 2: Be KIND … to every living creature
Lesson 3: Be PATIENT … Sometimes we have to get through the rough times(horses that didn’t meet Adam’s criteria) to get to the good times (TT)
Lesson 4: Don’t let anyone criticize your imagination. While it may not be important or even silly to others … Keep Dreaming!
Lesson 5: Sometimes a good cry and screaming fit is COMPLETELY necessary