My Happy Place

When all seems to be going wrong in the world, there’s one place I feel I can let my mind be carefree and feel like the world stops for a moment—the back of a horse.

Horses have always been my escape from life. The longest time I’ve lived without one of my horses at least a mile from me is two months, and that was a hard time for me. Whether it was school, work, boys, or life, my horses have always been there for me and allowed me to pause and regain the control I had on my life. Hopping on the back of any horse could simply make all of the troubles of the world seem to disappear.

This past weekend I was able to safely attend a barrel race and was lucky enough to have four successful runs that resulted in me winning two belt buckles and a nice sum of cash. I was happy to share videos of my runs on Facebook and while that’s what my personal page mostly consists of, it seems the videos of my runs we’re one of the few happy posts as I scrolled through my newsfeed. My heart swelled with joy as people commented on and shared my post stating how they enjoyed watching the videos. It wasn’t until that moment that I realized how thankful I was to have my own, little world to escape to.

I’m always thankful for my horses and each ride I have, but some moments make you stop and become a little bit more thankful. Julie R Liska Photography

I’m informed and educated on what is happening in our world today and when I say I have a world to escape to, I don’t mean I live in my own world surrounded by horses being oblivious to the current state. What I do mean is that it’s nice to head to the barn every night and swing a leg over my favorite horses, it’s nice to have a weekend where I can turn off the world and do what I love, it’s nice to have a place to feel happy.

Now is a time I feel I need to ride as much as possible to escape realities. When I ride, I don’t feel the stress of being an adult, the worry of a global pandemic, the sadness of racism, or any of the other problems we’re currently facing. To say I personally have a lot of real problems would be far from the truth, though. I have a loving family, supportive friends, my dream job, the ability to travel and compete when I want, and of course amazing horses. I’m privileged to live the life I live and there’s no denying that. But it’s OK for us to feel stressed and worried about things going on that aren’t immediately impacting us.

[READ: How COVID-19 Changed My Horse Life]

With this year feeling like a bit of a game of “what’s next,” I hope that you have a place you can escape to. Whether it’s riding horses, cleaning your barn, watching cute horse videos, listening to podcasts, or anything else, I hope that you have a happy place. 

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