Atticus isn’t just any horse. He is the horse I rescued.
Every year tens of thousands of horses are purchased for slaughter. While horse slaughter for human consumption has been illegal in the United States since 2006, and all horse slaughter houses in the U.S. have been closed since 2007, the international market for horse meat and meat products for other animal consumption is still very viable in Mexico and Canada. Horse meat buyers thrive off the low prices owners put on horses that are no longer deemed useful or affordable. The meat purchasers ship those horses across the border to be butchered and sold.
Atticus was a horse who found himself at auction and purchased by a kill pen buyer. Fortunately, he was bought buy an organization whose horses are filtered through the Peabody Kansas Horse Rescue Pen before going to the kill pen. The Peabody Kansas Horse Rescue Pen has a Facebook page where videos are shown of horses that can be saved. Each horse is featured in a video that includes its age, physical attributes, and price (the meat value). The horses are only “safe” at Peabody for a limited amount of time and cannot be saved once the deadline has passed. Atticus almost missed his deadline.
For a LONG time I have watched the videos of horses and ponies on the Peabody site and rejoiced each time one was marked “SAFE.”(Of course, I want to save them all.)
Recently, my family knew we would like another horse we could all ride. Hubby and I had been “shopping” a lot on equestrian sites and had test rode a few horses, but none fit exactly what we were looking for.
Some call it character. Others call it poor construction. I call it inevitable. After lifting up the weight of the world since my construction, things are going to start sagging. Edges will soften. Layers will lower.
Have you ever considered what it’s like to be a stepping stone in someone else’s journey every single day?
Have you ever thought about the demoralizing existence that comes from inviting others to walk all over you?
Have you given thought to the loads these stones have allowed to ascend and descend in efforts to keep life moving?
How do you think it feels to bow beneath feet as moss and weeds make their homes in my fractures and blemishes?
I think I speak for a lot of folks when I say that starting the day as a pandemic-exhausted parent has me feeling like Gandalf facing the legions of Sauron’s forces while also being Frodo seeking the best route up Mount Doom to destroy the Ring. I just want to make the bad stuff go away and bring about peace without too much destruction.
Just as Gandalf, Frodo, and their companions discovered, there are an awful lot of things looming in the way before we can make each day successful. Thankfully J.R.R. Tolkien provided many layers of inspiration for us in The Lord of the Rings series starting with, “There is some good in this world, and it’s worth fighting for.”(A totally Intentergy way of thinking.)
To bring the full Intentergy spirit to this post I want to remind everyone that it’s good to not have just one “precious” person or thing that absorbs all our energy and attention. Keep your loyal and loving companions close. If you get lost, scared, or distracted, there are plenty of ways to turn a new page.
Everyone finds peace in different places and ways. They are a lot of folks who find calm in music, art, or creating things. Others are soothed through cooking, dancing, or conversation.
Many find solace in the casting of a line. My oldest son is one of these individuals. Often times he finds it hard to be agreeable or enjoy the experiences provided to him. (Much to the annoyance of Hubby and I.) Every once in a while he just needs to have some tranquility on his line. The casting of his chosen bait or lure into the water and the optimism of potentially catching the perfect fish brings joy and balance to his life.
When it seems the world is completely off kilter and there isn’t anyone or anything that makes you feel like you have anything to offer, the best way to feel worthy is to surround yourself with people who value you.
I’m not sure if it’s my 41st birthday, or the new high energy (a.k.a. hyper-anxious) horse I just acquired, or the stress and chaos of the very-extended time my children have been home due to the Corona virus, but lately I have not felt worthy or successful. I have found myself questioning even my dinner choices and frantic over the potential of planning activities with family and friends. Apparently, my passion for planning has been hindered by the fear of making a wrong choice or exposing everyone to a potentially deadly situation with one penciling in of my calendar or preparation of turkey tortillas.
What I really needed were the wise words of Denzel Washington. “If you hang around 5 confident people, you will be the 6th. If you hang around with 5 intelligent people, you will be the 6th. If you hang around with 5 millionaires, you will be the 6th. If you hang around with 5 idiots, you will be the 6th.”
There is nothing better than a good adventure story, except when there is a GREATadventure story created through the collaboration of an entire 5th grade class AND the proceeds from its sale go to Special Olympics!!!
The class was fascinated by the character Punky. In the book, Punky is the uncle of main character Delrita. The story revolves around Delrita’s desire to go unnoticed by society because of the embarrassment she feels over Punky’s behavior, while still loving his childlike ways. Punky has Down Syndrome and the challenges of living with and loving someone who has an intellectual disability are shared in an honest and compelling manner.
The class was so moved by Punky’s story and connections they made to individuals with Down Syndrome that they decided to do something for the Special Olympics. They just weren’t sure what it was yet.
Last Christmas my youngest son received a remote controlled drone. It was a nice drone. So nice, in fact, that it required 10 AA batteries. Four batteries went into the drone itself and six went into the remote.
Christmas was really good to my boy and it was a week or so before he got around to playing with the new flying contraption. The thing is, he decided to play with the drone in my absence. Hubby was “watching” our two boys and my 5 year-old nephew when they opened the drone and its parts. After the surprise hurricane of packaging and instructions, the boys enlisted hubby to help with the batteries and directions. Taking his dad duties very seriously, my husband coached the boys on how to insert batteries the correct way and made valiant attempts to read the directions as they flew the drone crazily INSIDE our house.
After a “crash course” in drone flying, hubby and the three aspiring pilots took the flying terror outside. It was a clear and fairly warm day for late December so take off was a go. The drone proved difficult to control for the little hands of the the boys, and my husband was forced to keep a vigilant eye on their piloting. After a bit, they were cold and chose to come inside. The drone was left on the kitchen counter and the boys dispersed to reek havoc on another part of the house.
A short time later, my husband took a phone call in our home office and the drone took an unsupervised flight compliments of my nephew.