Today’s word prompt is ‘balm.’
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We all have different balms for our wounds. Those things that heal us, that are good for our mind and soul. Whether it be religion, friends, food, creativity; we all need a different tonic. For me, my balm is my boy, Friday. It’s a funny story how we came together. I don’t believe in fate but it was almost like it was meant to be.
I’ve been riding horses since I was 4 years old, but only ever at schools. As a little girl I used to promise my parents that when I was old enough I’d have my very own pony, clearly with obvious ignorance to the sheer expense they incur! As I became a teenager my passion wavered as I discovered friends and boys and the need for serious revision, so my hobby fell to the wayside. Fast forward to just over 3 years ago I was back in the saddle riding a horse for a friend who was injured. I’d go each week to her yard to help her out and I noticed a big black and white gangly thing stood looking bored and morose in a stable to the side, his name plate reading ‘Friday.’ Imagine a cow cross giraffe! He was huge but skinny and miserable and I’m a sucker for a sob story, it was quite literally love at first sight. So I started going prepared, and armed with carrots, the bribery began. He was clearly petrified of humans and had no trust in people and I quickly learned why. Friday was only 5 years old at this point but had already lived a life that’s full. He had been riddled with sarcoids; a type of equine tumour. They’d been left untreated so he was in a lot of pain. One day when I went down to the yard Friday was getting loaded on to a horse box, well they were trying to get him to. This poor horse had been left, neglected and mistreated, emancipated and petrified and they were whipping him to within an inch of his life to get onto a trailer. He was having none of it and there is no forcing an animal of over half a tonne to act against its will. He wouldn’t cooperate so they decided he was going to the meat man to be killed. I couldn’t have that now could I!
Without really thinking I said WAIT I’ll have him. Without having ever owned a horse in my life, I suddenly had an unusable, ill, giant horse that was feral and hated people. But he was mine. I walked him round to the nearest farm and we’ve been there ever since. It’s been hard work. I couldn’t afford the vet bills and the surgery so I tried every holistic and herbal remedy going and lucky for me they worked! Gaining his trust, getting him back up to a clean bill of health and building a relationship has been the hardest but the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done. He can still be a nightmare, he’s like the naughty kid that’s throwing an absolute tantrum in the supermarket while the mum stands there head in hands dying inside. That’s us but I wouldn’t have it any other way, his arseholery is endearing.
I saved his life but he’s definitely saved mine, particularly when I was really unwell 2 years ago. There were so many times I went and collapsed in a crying heap in the field and it was like he knew. There was one day in particular that was pivotal in my mental health journey where it all fell apart (I spoke about it in this post). The next day I went to see my lad and I sat there telling him all about what happened, horses can’t argue back believe it or not. They’re the best listeners. I cried and cried, I felt completely done, like I had no future and instead of being his usual bolshy self, he sat down next to me and placed his face against my cheek. He just held it there and I felt his velvet skin, his warmth and his breath and for the first time in many months, I felt hope. I can’t explain that feeling; it was overwhelming and I just felt pure love. It gets me emotional writing about it. It was one of those moments that felt like magic.
From that day on he wasn’t just my horse, he’s the balm for my wounds. He heals my soul and my heart and I can’t imagine my life without him. After writing this, he’ll be getting an extra tight squeeze and a massive kiss tomorrow morning! Let me know what your healers are, I’d love to know.
Till tomorrow x