He’s the one to blame for us moving here. If I hadn’t have met him when I was a shy, chubby fourteen year old, I think our living situation may have been tremendously different. Rather than toiling away every free moment, sanding and painting and hammering and planing, I could have been traveling to exotic destinations and lavishly furnishing and decorating my home. We would have had more money to save. We wouldn’t have even had to drive so far for school and work for crying out loud!
Not a man at all. A sixteen year old, bay overo paint and pinto gelding named Keystone Special. Most people know him simply as, ‘Stoney.’
I can scarcely believe how long this good ol’ boy has been an integral part of my life. And though he is (probably) to blame for our poverty, how could I stay angry at a face like this?
I suppose it was (a tiny bit) my fault as well. When the time came to move, Jack obliged my crying and begging to bring him with us. It was no small task and not without lots of praying and hoping for the right place to come along. It’s not like finding an apartment to rent that allows dogs and cats–it was a matter of discovering a rural property large enough to keep this 1,200 pound creature, all within our meager budget. Well, him and a friend–horses are very social and don’t do well alone. Cue Moonlight Dancer, a gentle seal brown quarter horse mare affectionately called ‘Dancer.’
Now we all know Stoney’s (mostly) the one to blame. Because of him and my inability to let him go (I’ve read and watched Black Beauty too many times), we live here. I haven’t heard him complaining about being the scapegoat to all of our woes and worries but generally if he’s got a full tummy and he’s not too hot, not too cold, not drenched or sleepy, he’s happy.
It is certainly a sacrifice living here but by far my favorite definition of sacrifice is to give up something to receive something better. I don’t think that money or traveling or ease and comfort could have replaced the lasting memories we have created here. I’ll be the first to cry about how trying, difficult and time consuming it all is and also the first to relish how satisfying it is to watch the house blossom. I suppose my kids are (partially) to blame too. I just wanted them to enjoy growing up abound horses. Because of Stoney (and now that darling Dancer), we’re grateful to have the chance to abide so closely with these beautiful creatures.