There is something undeniably endearing and captivating in watching a woman tending to a horse that she loves. There is nothing quite like it in the realm of relations between humankind and the beasts over which we were given dominion. I believe there is something special about the bond between a woman and a horse that she loves.
And that special bond reveals the elements required for a fantastically fulfilling relationship between a woman and a man. Because whether or not we like it, men are a lot like horses- even those of us with exceptional intellect or keen self-awareness. Our animal kinship may have been suppressed over thousands of years of human development and advancement but we cannot extinguish it altogether- and thank Almighty God for that. Those core instincts and attributes keeps our drive alive and thriving through all of the emotional and psychological burdens we conjure up and concern ourselves with.
A woman who has a gratifying relationship with her man really knows that man– she truly understands what he needs and what makes him tick.
His motives are no more difficult for her to read than a menu at a Chinese Restaurant- even if the layout is a little confusing, after a reasonable effort she can find the Kung-Pao Chicken and Crab Rangoon with no problem. She recognizes his capabilities and has a true sense of what his maximum productivity and full throttle power looks like.
She also knows what distracts or disrupts him- even if she doesn’t fully understand why. And what is most important, she is both willing and able put all of that knowledge into caring for that man and loving him into being his absolute best self- for her benefit just as much as his own.
But that requires a level of focus and attention that can only come from great affection- the kind that a woman can have easily for a gigantic, powerful and beautiful beast that cannot talk back and generally does what it is told to do. On that count, the horse will always have the man beat, but the relationship discipline for the woman is frighteningly indistinguishable. A woman that owns a horse needs to have a clear understanding of what she has in that horse in order for that relationship to be a success as well. Does she have a work-horse, a show-horse, or a race-horse?
Just like horses, most men fall into one of these three categories as well. Of course there are some men that may be a combination of two categories- or if a man is especially blessed, he may be the rarest of beasts that carries the attributes of all three- but a singular core identity is probably readily identifiable by the women that know that man best. A woman that owns a show-horse is going to be bitterly disappointed if her life circumstance is best suited for a work-horse to hold down her stable and carry the weight. That show-horse will collapse under the pressure of the work that is required and it will be broken in spirit to the point that it cannot even function as the show-horse it was meant to be should he ever find his way to that circumstance.
And what will come of the work-horse whose owner really needs a thoroughbred runner to get out there and place in races week after week? That horse is going to suffer both publicly and privately for the sin of failing to live up to his owner’s misplaced expectations. His sides will sting from being struck repeatedly with that jockey’s whip to no avail because he should be proudly pulling a plow or a wagon on a working farm somewhere with no pressure to perform or compete against other horses for prizes and praises.
And just imagine the misery of that racehorse and its owner who cannot get him to slow down his forceful and competitive strides to hit his prissy poses just perfectly when the cameras are popping and the caviar and champagne crowd applauds politely- while slyly laughing at his crude ineptitude. In addition to being humiliated, this woman will be watching her investment go down the drain with virtually no way to recover her losses. So she and her horse will feel like losers when the truth is far more complex.
In reality, none of these women that owned the horses, nor the horses themselves, are losers despite the fact that they all lost big in their respective scenarios. They were not losers- they were just not matched up properly. The owner did not know what she really had in the horse she took ownership of. She tried to make that race-horse into a show-horse; or that work-horse into a race-horse; and that show-horse into a work-horse. Maybe she saw it and was taken by it for some aesthetic or emotional reason and she did not take the time to really explore it for suitability. God knows that happens far more frequently than we like to admit in our 2 legged love affairs.
But however she got there, once the owner recognizes the horse’s failure to serve her needs she has a choice to make.
She can punish the horse for its disappointing performance- whipping him until he is impervious to its effect, or neglecting him until he gives up on deriving any joy from his circumstance. Of course she can continue to repeat the same failing strategy that left both she and the horse so undernourished. Or she can learn what her horse really can do well and adjust her circumstance to fit his best capabilities. Or she can move on from the horse altogether- sell him for whatever she can get and apply the lessons learned from owning him to the next horse she buys.
It is difficult to imagine a circumstance where either of the first two options is constructive, but the last two have significant promise. That promise is based on the fact that the owner is recognizing her core responsibility in owning a horse at all is positioning her horse to win- to be at his absolute best when he is running, working, or performing. Without her proper support, that horse is going to have a hard time winning- regardless of what he is doing. Making adjustments for the horse so that it can win or cutting the horse loose altogether can both be acts of love- and in the end are the ultimate reflection on the owner’s values.
And that last point accounts for the powerful and palpable love that exists between these lovely ladies and their majestic beasts. How they love and care for that horse is a grand reflection on them and symbolizes their mastery over the power vested in them as women. Having the complete loyalty, affection and benefit of these impressive animals can only have the impact of impressing the hell out of anybody who witnesses it. And no woman is above showing off a little bit sometimes. And all things considered that is not a bad deal for the horse either.