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"On the Back of Cooper"

For those who know me now, you know Cooper. For those who are not familiar, Mini Cooper aka "Cooper" is a small chestnut horse. I bought him 7 years ago as a "project" to train up and sell. As a professional in the horse industry, this is something I have done time and again. Cooper however caught my heart and became a keeper. He is slight of stature but not in personality. He holds a

unique place in my heart as he carried me through the darkest time of my adult life. He continues to carry me on a road of resilience and ongoing recovery. His name banners Cooper's Crossroad, the organization, with fact. He happened in my life at a crossroad.

Horses are often put in to the category of leisure activities, like boats and boating, that not everyone can afford or have access to. As I see it, horses are that, but much more. Their very presence is therapeutic. The rhythm of their movement, the sound of their hooves on the ground, the lessons they give us through just BEING, is now recognizable and supported by research.

As facilitator of Cooper's Crossroad Farming For Resilience program, I see over and over again the powerful healing that comes from connection between horse and human. I am a believer in the healing that comes from being around horses and believe that my career with horses has helped me build resilience.

With that said, I love to be in the saddle as the sun rises. For me, there is nothing like greeting the day from the back of a horse. Often I have reflective moments during these early rides.

Several weeks ago, as I was warming up Cooper for a early school, my thoughts turned to what being on the back of Cooper signifies. I am one of many who has found healing through horses. And it spurs me to share the wholesome, therapeutic nature of horses. Cooper's Crossroad was born on the back of a horse and is growing to uphold the mission of raising awareness of trauma and adverse childhood experiences with the help of our equine companions.

Thank you Cooper.

I wrote the following after that morning ride :

"On the Back of Cooper"

On the back of Cooper I found myself

On the back of Cooper I am safe

On the back of Cooper I can FEEL

On the back of Cooper I am courageous

On the back of Cooper I forgive

On the back of Cooper I have gratitude

For the back of Cooper.

With huge and loving gratitude for our equine partners, Christina

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