I should also add that Lady had a reputation for being a rank mare- my angry brother would try to ride her. After a few of times of being rubbed off on the barn door, she actually took a bite of flesh from his shoulder. Eventually, he couldn’t catch her. Maybe she was just a good judge of character, most horses are.
Now that you know that part, you have to wonder why my parents thought Lady would make a good babysitter, but it was common to let kids ride on truck running boards back then, too.
As far as I was concerned there was no question- I was safe because I was so incredibly special, I must be a horse whisperer! I must be so magical -much more so than anyone else- that horses adored me.
And you are right- there was nothing that special about me. Actually Lady wasn’t all that unusual either. No big mystery, most horses do echo their riders. My brother’s aggression was answered as impersonally as my love was answered, as simple as a reflection in a mirror.
Horses are individuals and I don’t recommend the daycare I had for every horse or child. But sometimes to a rider challenged by a horse behavior, it can seem pretty complicated if we over-think it. Those are the times I remember Lady. The Golden Rule still applies with simplicity and justice.
Maybe Reciprocity is the truest name for a horse.
Anna Blake, www.AnnaBlakeTraining.com
(Photo: Spirit, still doing daycare.)