Galloping Winds Academy
(Knoxville Illinois, USA)
It's been exactly a year since my old horse, Black Star, had to be put down last year. We had gotten in a bad fall and he was in terrible condition that the only thing we could do was to have him put down. I haven't ridden since our bad fall and after Black Star left this world.
"Avery, come down here!" My mom yelled to me from the bottom of the stairs. "Coming!" I yelled back.
"Can you come outside for a sec?" My mom asked me.
I followed my mom outside our backdoor. My dad was holding a lead rope to a dark bay quarter horse gelding. I walked back towards the door and let out a sigh. "I told you guys I'm done riding!" I yelled.
I ran back up stairs and slammed my door shut. I laid on my bed and cried into my pillow. I looked over at my nightstand to see a picture of Black Star and I with our ribbons we won at our first show together. I grabbed the picture and held it close to me on my heart.
"Avery." My mom said on the other side of my bedroom door. "We need to talk."
"Door's open." I sighed.
My bedroom door opened then closed shut. I sat up and my mom sat next to me. She slapped my leg with her hand but not hard.
"I remember when you were seven, all you said was you want to ride horses." My mom smiled. "Now you are giving up this one thing you love."
"Mom, I'm not going to have this horse have to be put down like Black Star." I said, looking at my mom.
"Can you please ride again?" My mom asked.
"Fine." I sighed. "Get my horse ready."
"Hershey is his name."
My mom left me alone to get changed. I put my breeches and boots on. I strapped my pink helmet on then went outside. Hershey was all tacked up.
I placed my foot in the stirrup iron and left myself up on the horse. I took a deep breath and urged Hershey forward. Soon we were cantering up to a log jump. Could I take this jump after what happened with Black Star?
As Hershey raced up to the jump, he turned to the side. I could see my parents putting their heads down as their daughter failed but she wasn't finished yet.
I made Hershey go up to the jump again and sure enough, he went over it. It felt good to be in the saddle again. I was born to be here and I knew it.