When my daughter was little she fell in love with horses. So, we paid for lessons for years, about 1-2 per month.I spent many hot afternoons watching her ride while trying to keep 3 small siblings out of trouble on a farm. In high school she developed a knee injury and had to take a break. College started, life got busy and suddenly she wasn’t riding any longer. Years had passed.
Then she remembered what she loved.
But being a college student on a tight budget made lessons unaffordable. And who can ride with papers to write, a job to keep up with and all of the adulting things that needed doing? There were lots of reasons why this wouldn’t work. Very practical, understandable reasons. And yet….
Catie started with volunteer work at a horse rescue near our home. She cleaned horses, learned about training them, learned about vet needs, loved on wounded animals and spent time riding them for exercise and to prepare them for forever homes. She served, with no expectation of return. She just did what she loved. Then she also found a farm near college, one that she could volunteer labor in exchange for lessons. So she mucks stalls, feeds and cleans, hauls hay and, when she is finished with that…she rides. Now she can serve and ride both when she is home and when she is away at school.
Why am I telling you this sweet story?
Because there is so much we can learn here. While I’m over here trying to figure out when my kid turned things around to teach me, I’m noticing so many things.
She recognized what she loved.
She made what she loved a priority in her life.
She started out by serving, without any expectation of an end result.
She did that well and became trusted by the farms she works for.
She was given an opportunity to step up to more and she was prepared and ready for that step.
She is continuing to excel and commits to continued learning, training and working every time she is there.
She shows up and does the work.
She makes it seem so simple, but I’ve also seen that she says no to some other things in order to be able to say yes to the most important things.
Maybe a part of beginning again is about starting this process- recognize, prioritize, serve, show up, do the work.