Then and now.
First picture shows Khyssie as a yearling (around 18 months to be more exact) and the second picture was taken just about a month ago. Khyssie will be five years old in May.
Because someone has to take the pictures she’s with Clint in the first picture and with Calvin in the second. Both of these expert horsemen have been instrumental in helping me along the way. A lot of people I know prefer to send their horses away to trainers for a month or two and enjoy their new and improved skills when they (the horses) return. But I decided when I bought Khyssie that I wanted to be there for every minute of her training. Even if I wasn’t doing the training myself I needed to see how it was done. And to be honest, I couldn’t stand the thought of being away from my filly for more than a day or two. It was the right decision for me and for my horse. I have learned more in the last four years of her training than I ever would have if I’d left it up to the professionals and frankly, I don’t think I would know what to do with her if I hadn’t been taught along the way. Admittedly, I have done nearly all of the work myself, but since I’d never trained a horse before, I needed that advice and helping hand when I didn’t know how to approach something new (or someone to get video of me hitting the dirt - which, fortunately, I don’t have on film yet).
I owe Clint and Calvin a debt of gratitude. Yes, I did pay them for their help, but more times than I can count they also offered help free of charge when I needed it. They often stepped in and just gave of their time without expecting anything in return. I think they felt that they were as responsible for this young mare’s upbringing as much as I was. And I am truly grateful.
I’ve been gone for three days - off to Los Angeles to welcome my daughter back from three long months in Japan. And boy, does she have some stories to tell! So happy to have my daughter home, so happy she’s had a cultural experience to last a lifetime. But you know what? She’s already planning her next excursion. As much as I like to have her close I have encouraged all of my kids to live and that means to explore, to break out and see new worlds, meet new people, and seek out new adventures.
And tomorrow I’m going back to training and challenging myself and my horse, and if I would take my own advice I would write a new book by the end of the year. I think I’ll do it.