Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Horses are Teaching Everyone

Spence won a week at Equestrian Camp as a door prize at our school's Spring Fling fundraiser.  It's at our university's Equestrian Center and it's really quite amazing.  He started yesterday and has already ridden "his" horse, Scarlett, "all by himself - without a teacher touching the ropes or anything."  (He says he went "medium".  But, he's going to learn to go "fast" and then "super fast".) Wow.  You go, Buffalo Bill.

The Equestrian Center also has a program that is near and dear to our hearts - The Therapeutic Riding Center.  A few years back, it came to the attention of Shawn and his co-workers that this unbelievable program was having to haul its horses (and these aren't just any horses - these are the cream of the crop, gentle, patient, smart) in an old, dilapidated trailer.  The floor actually broke out from under one of the horses and his leg fell through (luckily the horse was okay).  So, Shawn's office single-handedly pooled their individual resources and bought them a top-of-the-line horse trailer.  Then, realizing that the school didn't have a pickup that could easily pull it - they bought them one of those, too!  Truly, it is an amazing group of people with whom Shawn works.

Fast forward to yesterday and I showed Spence the trailer. This morning we started talking about The Therapeutic Riding Center.  I told him how riding horses could teach kids who learn differently than he does.  I told him I didn't know if his "teachers" from camp are the same "teachers" that the kids at the TRC have.  Those teachers are amazingly skilled and help the kids learn even more than just how to ride a horse. "They're just as smart as your teachers at school, but they use horses instead of chalkboards!" (Picture me feeling smug and proud of my analogy.)

He looked at me thoughtfully.  I thought we were going to continue our deep, philosophical discussion about how God has made us all differently, but perfectly the people we are supposed to be...

And, he said to me, "Mom...  What's a chalkboard?"

Ouch.  The horses have now even taught me - that I'm old.  Does anyone have an abacus I could borrow?  I seem to have misplaced mine.


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