Friday, June 26, 2015


One of my favorite pastimes is sitting on the porch watching the horses run.  About eight years ago, we got an unbroken horse for Katie.  We named the horse Jersey Girl. I thought I could break her.  It’s rather sad when you think about it - breaking a horse literally means, “breaking the spirit”.  When you break a horse, you bend it to your will.  It’s really hard to break a horse’s spirit.  I worked for months trying to break Jersey Girl.   I think it would be more fitting to say that Jersey Girl broke us with her “Jersey Girl” attitude!  Katie was probably not at the best age for horse breaking with her mother.  I’ve learned that teenage girls tend to butt heads frequently with their mothers.  When teenage girl attitude is teamed up with “Jersey Girl” attitude - Let’s just say that I don’t want to be in the horse breaking business anymore!

I don’t want to be in the people breaking business either, although I think that we all do some people breaking from time to time if we are honest.  Then there are the times when we break our own spirit. 

In thinking about this phenomena of breaking one’s spirit, I believe that each person must be acutely aware of what their own spirit needs to thrive.  I know that my spirit needs to be free.  It cannot be lassoed or penned in.  My natural reaction to being penned in is to run.  In this way, my spirit is akin to the horse’s spirit. 

When I tried to break Katie’s 1200 lb. horse, I had it haltered and I used a long rope to give it lots of room.  The horse would feel the tug of the rope and respond not knowing that it was only being controlled by a five foot tall, 125 lb. weakling.  The more I reigned in the horse, however, the harder it was to control her because she sensed the shifting power.  The minute she thought that I was dominating her, she bucked, kicked and fought for her freedom.  She only let me control her from a distance and, even then, she really never gave up her independence. 

That’s me.  I’m just like Jersey Girl.  I am a Jersey Girl, after all.  If I’m not given lots of rope, I’ll start to buck and kick and do just about anything to break free.  There’s a part of me that thinks this is not good.  I must always think and act outside the box.  Yet, maybe I’m just looking at this wrong.  It’s the way God made me, after all.  It’s my spirit.  I believe it is part of why I am so drawn to the spirit of a horse. 

There are many things that free my spirit.  Perhaps the most freeing is writing.  It’s something that I love and yet I’ve strayed away from it for a long time.  I’ve reigned in my passion for writing - lassoed it with negative self-talk: “You're not a good writer.  No one wants to read your stories.  Give up.” 

So, over time, a part of me has given up on writing.  I’ve locked the creative door of my brain and thrown away the key.  I’ve allowed myself to break my own spirit.  Well, no more!  I’m going back to writing and I may or may not post the stories on my blog.  After all, my writing is for my soul and it really doesn’t matter if anyone reads it or likes it.  I’m going to promise my spirit that I will allow it to be free in as many areas of my life as I can.  As of today, I will vow to keep my spirit unbroken!