When Two Worlds Collide
When I reached the barn at the top of the hill, I spotted Jill and walked over to say good morning. Right before breakfast, she had told me that she had been thinking and didn’t feel the name “Perseus” quite fit the incredible little horse that I had been working with. She then asked me if I could think of a new name that would better suit him. I was so honored to have that privilege and took the responsibility very seriously. When it comes to horses, to me a name is much more than a mere identification. When I adopted Eternity, I had kept the name she was given by Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue because I felt it was beautiful and most importantly, unique. At the time, I never realized just how special her name would become.
As we attended our meetings each week, I would often hear “eternity” being discussed about from the platform. Hearing my horse’s name and being reminded of her in the littlest of ways, but in a place where my faith was also being developed had been one of the greatest gifts. In this way, my two worlds collided and fused into a life that felt whole and unstoppable. When I was with my horse, I was reminded of my faith and of all that God has promised us, that is soon to be fulfilled with a life on a paradise earth for all of eternity. When I was at meeting, I was reminded of the horse who had become my greatest friend, the center of my world, the one who made me feel whole and left me buzzing with excitement for all of our adventures yet to be had. To this day, I still smile and feel comforted to hear and see her name as I read the scriptures. It is because of Eternity, that I realized how special it is to allow those two worlds to collide… to become one, fulfilling dream of a life.
I knew that when I adopted another horse, I wanted to choose another biblical reference… one that was unique, just as Eternity had been. I also knew that I owed it to this amazing little weekend partner to leave him with a name that had deep, spiritual meaning. But how would I choose something with only a few short hours left? I began to ask around… how did you know what you wanted to name your horse? Most of the group had certain names that stuck out to them over the years and they just knew that when they got another horse, that’s what they would name them. I had explained to Chris my feelings about biblical names and mentioned that the two names I was mulling over for my next horse were Spirit, which I know especially for a Mustang has become more cliche and less spiritual, and Reign. When she heard the name “Reign”, she said “Oh… I like that.” She asked me if I had considered any of the bible books for potential names… but I wanted something more unique.
When it was time for our last horsemanship session, we headed down to the corrals. Our assignment today was to focus on what the horses wanted to do, since yesterday was about what we wanted the horses to do. We were to stand at our horse’s withers, with our hand upon them or our arm resting over the top of them, and to “mosey” with them. If they wanted to go forward, we would follow them forward. If they wanted to trot, we would have to jog to keep up. No leading, no directing, just following. I soon learned that Perseus was more of a homebody (just like me!). He had started to leave the corral, but then decided to back-up and stay right in his comfortable home. Jill had come over to fill the horses’ water troughs and asked if I had come up with any names yet. Again, I shared my thought process with her, just as I had with Chris. Once again, when I said the name “Reign,” she responded with the same words Chris had… “Oh, I like that.” I nodded in agreement… I did, too. “Could you do Reign-something, or something-Reign, maybe?” she asked. As I pondered what she said, she asked if I would keep an eye on the water and turn it off when it was full, so that she could move on to the rest of the horses.
Reign-something… something-Reign… I mulled it over for minutes, looking at this magnificent little horse in front of me. How I had come to love him so. Memories of Eternity flashed in my mind. It was at that moment that I knew. “Eternal Reign,” I whispered softly. A name with so much more meaning than I had ever thought was possible. I closed my eyes, but I couldn’t contain the smile that was stretching across my face. I knew so much more than just Reign’s new name… I also knew that he was meant for me. All that we had accomplished together over the weekend flashed across my mind. How could I possibly let this incredible horse go off into the universe with anyone else? A horse who had given me the gift of saying goodbye to my girl, a horse who had put so much trust in me as his friend, a horse who had all the heart in the world.
I look across to the arena and see Chris. “You win!” I shout to her. I can tell she couldn’t quite hear me as she started making her way towards us. When she is within earshot, I once again shout “You win!” with a smile on my face. “What?” she asks. “He’s mine,” I said. She let out an exclamation of so many emotions… because she too has been there since day one with me and Eternity. “Oh, Danie!” she said tearfully as she walked around to envelope me in a congratulatory hug. I was so happy as I excitedly told her how I finally knew. She then left me to spend time alone with Reign as it slowly sunk in that he was mine… I had a partner once again.
Minutes later, I heard an excited outburst come from across the way behind the round pen and no sooner saw Jill coming towards us as quickly as one could walk. Jill came into the corral and wrapped me in the warmest of hugs. She was one of the first ones I told when I lost Eternity and she knew how difficult the last few years have been for me. She has watched my dreams soar to new heights, my heart be shattered and over the course of this weekend, has watched Reign slowly piece it back together. We both cried tears of joy and of relief. I am so grateful to my friend for the loving, self-sacrificing person she is and all of the hard work and effort she has put forth over the years. It is because of her that I have had these opportunities and experiences with horses that have changed my life for the better.
At the end of the day, Jill told me that I had originally been paired up with Beanie but at the last second, she and Chris switched me to work with Reign. I also found out that Reign had very little handling and was only haltered, led, and trimmed. It explained those little moments I had initially taken personally and it deepened my awe and admiration for everything else Reign accomplished. He quite possibly has the most heart out of any horse I have ever known. Never in my wildest dreams did I believe I would find a horse like Reign. The bond that I had with Eternity was something so unique that I feared I would never find anything close to it once she was gone. Reign has become one of the greatest blessings from God in my life, because he has begun healing my heart and has made me feel whole again. The mutual trust we have with one another is a beautiful gift and I know in my heart that we’ll be there for one another… for all of eternity.
This post is part of a series from my experience of attending the Glamp, Pamp and Revamp retreat at The Medicine Horse Project in Caliente, CA.