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Column: Out for a ride

An opinion piece on the joys of riding a horse.
Stephanie Zoer

As I sit back and think about things from years past, it is hard for me to believe that I am in my 60s.

Where on Earth did time go, and why is it going by so much faster the older we get?

My mom always told me as a child that we needed to make the most out of life, and to enjoy the things that we love.

I was four years old when I rode my first horse and this became a love for me, and while so many young people grow out of their childhood enjoyments, I never did. I was five years old when I was bucked off my first horse, but it never turned me away from the love I have for horses.

It became important to me, just like breathing, to climb on the majestic beast and go for a ride.

This was a time for me to get away from the real world and soak up the smell of my horse with the wind blowing in my hair as we galloped across the fields.

Over the years, I continued to have this uncontrollable passion for horses, but there was a time that I felt the need to give it up due to health issues and fear of being bucked off. There was a time I could not walk due to these health issues, and I reluctantly threw in the towel to the thing I enjoyed most in life.

It never left my blood and was always on my mind, and when my health became better, I once again felt the urge to ride.

We all need something in life that gives us passion, and something that takes us on a magical journey. Horses do that for me. For over 50 years I have been riding, and I have tried almost every discipline, from speed events to the slower ones, but each brought me something at that time in my life.

Each time I swing my leg over the wonderful horse that I own, I am grateful for her and blessed that I am able to do what I love.

My coach tells me I am a therapeutic rider, as I never have a bad ride. It does not matter if we did not achieve what I had planned, it is always an enjoyable time spent in the saddle. My horse is very much my therapy; without her I am sure I would be crazy by now.

We all need something to go to that brings us a great deal of enjoyment.

It does not matter what age we become, we cannot give those things up, as we will only get older, and it will get harder to achieve. If we continue with it, suddenly we realize that we are older but still able to do some of the things that we loved as a child.

There will be times when we need to slow down a little, but never give up. The years that I gave up riding were the most difficult for me.

Make the time to enjoy life, whether it be bike riding, baseball or just going for a walk.

I am lucky to have a husband that supports my horse addiction, and he knows how important it is to me, just as I know how much he loves trucks.

Life is never too busy to not find that passion and today it could be the best therapy a person could ask for.

My therapy is my horse, it takes me away from life’s stresses, and brings me into a world where nothing else matters, even if it is only for an hour.

It truly is the best feeling in the world, so go for it.