Building Confidence on the Ranch

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A few months ago, I started volunteering at an equestrian therapy center. I had a desire to spend time around horses, and this seemed like a good cause. However, the whole thing is definitely out of my comfort zone. It has been an interesting experience as I try to fit into a new world and build my confidence around horses.

I spend a lot of time observing and just listening. Most of the people are, of course, horse people, and they spend a lot of time talking about all things horse. I am definitely an outsider since I am not a horse person. I am learning, though, and trying to build some friendships along the way.

I certainly like making friends with the horses. That seems a little easier for me. Animals are the best. I have been learning about grooming horses, leading horses, and just generally about taking care of them. I didn’t know how much I didn’t know.

I think it’s good therapy for me. I like being out in the fresh air and surrounded by animals. Sometimes I get a good workout on the ranch, like when I haul water buckets. I am totally good with that. 

A lot of different people come to the ranch for horse therapy. It is interesting to observe how people progress week by week. I am fascinated to see how the instructors interact with the various students. Patience is definitely important.

Recently I started working around some miniature horses, and that has been a good experience. They really are just too adorable. It’s funny how the big horses are afraid of the little ones.

I try to be open to whatever needs to be done. I seek to be easy-going even when I feel overwhelmed. Each time that I go, I am nervous about making mistakes, but slowly I feel that I am building some confidence.