As soon as I accepted my job in Taiwan I knew I had to retire my horse. After 4 years of only seeing him during the summer and on breaks from school I knew it would not be fair to let Rascal sit out his life at a small farm in New Jersey, especially when my future was so unknown (I have no idea when I will return to New Jersey or the U.S. for that matter). So after a month of contacting a ton of places that had no vacancies, I finally decided on something a family friend did 4 years ago; a natural horse retirement program in west Texas.
Having him live out the rest of his days as a wild horse makes me so happy for him but so incredibly sad at the same time. I cry for the memories and the amazing things that happened with him that will never happen again. I cry for not having somewhere to escape my stress. I cry, ultimately, for how much he deserves this. I never knew much about Rascal’s life before I got him, besides that he was a racehorse, but I knew that he was not treated well. And at my first barn, where I got him, and where I did not know any better, he was still not treated well. But after we left that place and I learned more about horses, Rascal’s temper subsided and his loving energy flourished.
Our bond grew stronger these next many years, even when I left for college. Each time I returned and called his name he would pick his head up from nibbling at the grass as quick as ever to trot on over to me. We would work together in the rings,relax while walking the wooded trails and I would spend hours grazing and grooming him. This gentle giant was my way of connecting to things greater than myself. I learned the art of speechless communication, unconditional love and patience. I love so much and more about this beautiful creature, how could I let something like this go? How can I just give up something that is so wonderful, something that has shaped me to be the woman I am today? Taking from what I learned, unconditional love, I knew this decision was solely for the horse’s happiness and not mine.