Throughout the 17 years I have been on this earth, I have encountered many amazing friends, each of whom has influenced me in some way. The friend whom I love and cherish most, though, is not even a human being, but a horse. I call him Teddy Bear, or Teddy for short. Before I had him, I owned a number of other horses, each very special, but as difficult as it is to admit, Teddy is my favorite.
I saw Teddy for the first time two months ago. A young boy brought him over from the Netherlands but had grown too tall and was forced to sell him. Teddy arrived at my barn before anyone even knew he was for sale. Although I was not in the market for a new horse, my trainer immediately recognized his incredible potential and after long negotiations, Teddy became mine.
I knew then that I finally had a horse capable of helping me achieve my dreams in the show ring, but I didn't know I was about to gain the best friend ever.
In Teddy I found a selfless, respectful, vivacious personality who has taught me more than I could ever learn from a human. He has taught me self-reliance, love, dedication and compassion. It is in this horse that my personality and hard work shine through.
The bond between horse and rider is stronger than you might imagine. Horses possess the ability to sense whatever the rider is feeling, and it affects their feelings, too. Due partially to Teddy's personality, I initially found it difficult to have this kind of relationship with him. He has a very distinct personality, one that makes me laugh regularly. As far as Teddy is concerned, he is a king to be treated like royalty. Therefore, when he...