Reader Lisa Lach shares a heartfelt essay in the form of an open letter to a special group of people: barn friends.
Dear Barn Friends,
I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you. Over the years, I’ve had many friends and acquaintances from school, work and other sports. But there’s no other type of friend that comes close to you, Barn Friends.
You understand me. And I understand you.
Ours is a friendship that comes from late nights and early mornings at the barn. You’re the ones that are there to help find that lost halter in the muddy pasture. To come look at this weird spot on his face. To feel if there’s heat in this leg. To groom my horse when I’m running late for my lesson. To share when there’s a great sale at the tack shop. To take a turn walking circles during a colic scare. To gallop through the snowy field or down a long, straight dirt road. To witness my tears when I’m frustrated or scared or fell off. To say say, “good ride today,” even if it wasn’t. To get a little tipsy with.
Thank you for the trail rides and game days and long cooling-out conversations. For cleaning all the stalls at the show without being asked. For being my unofficial photographer/videographer. For bringing in my horse when it’s muddy just so I don’t have to change into my muck boots. For getting bareback butt. For the countless high fives. For lending me a hoofpick. For watching (and loving) the cheesiest of horse movies together. For celebrating my successes. For commiserating with my failures.
And especially thank you to my Barn Friends who have made their horses available for me to ride. That is a beautiful, trusting thing to do. Believe me, I do not take it lightly.
Because of all of this, to me, BFF means something a little different: Barn Friends Forever.
Lisa Lach has been riding for nearly 20 years in a variety of disciplines. She currently rides anything she can get her hands on, and has been competing locally in the Wisconsin hunter ring for the last four years. She is a marketing professional by day, and in her free time she blogs at Centered in the Saddle.