by Dan Roark

In the volunteer highlight yesterday, Jessica brought up a point about volunteer therapy I’ve been thinking about myself.  The picture is of me side walking with Clayton on Rain. I don’t get many pictures of me – I’m usually taking the pictures.

So I’ll use myself as an example. One Sunday night, I had a series of strange dreams and woke up Monday in a mental fog I couldn’t shake. My head hurt so I took something for it, and that only succeeding in thickening the fog. I had no energy and I had a hard time focusing. I really didn’t feel like volunteering at New Hope like I usually do on Monday.

But I got ready and headed to New Hope anyway. Even when I parked up by the house I was hoping there would be extra volunteers. Walking down towards the barn, as I passed the goat’s pen they were up on their tires looking at me expectantly. Further toward the barn, Duke was looking at me over the fence, letting me know he knew I had treats – even though he knows I won’t give him any until after the lesson. Then the fog lifted.  I wasn’t tense any more, I was calm. Which the horses and riders picked up on and were calm. Not realizing my calm actually came from them in the first place. That’s how it works.

It may not be magical, but something happens when one enters the little universe we call New Hope. Bad moods are left in the parking lot. Or rather, they drip off into the sand and dirt the closer you come to the horses – riders, volunteers, and visitors included. And the horses reciprocate, most of the time.

Ride on and ride for hope.

Donate to New Hope.

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