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Employees > Bruce – The Table Was Turned

Submitted by Bruce Hindle, O&A employee 2000—2002

One of the participants was terrified about riding horses. She just really didn't think she could do it and kept saying she couldn’t do it and didn’t want to go. If I remember correctly, this was the first time we were riding out on a trail instead of at a therapeutic riding center. Anyway, with lots of coaxing she finally got on a horse and off we went up the trail. She was visibly nervous all along the way; so, I kept telling her that she was doing real fine and great and wonderful, and all those positive kinds of things, just trying to help pick her confidence up and calm her fears. 

Now, one thing about this horse trial is that it was really hilly, pretty steep at times, and rocky, and there you are way up on this horse, way up high, so it was kind of a wild ride for me too. Anyway, the participant said from time to time that she wanted to turn around, wanted to go back, and she really was not happy horseback riding. I'm riding along beside her, talking to her, and then my horse goes under a tree and a low limb knocks me right off! I fell all the way to the ground on my back, knocking the wind out of me, and all I saw were hooves around my head. I scrambled back to my feet as quick as I could, got back on the horse, and was kind of shaken up.  

For the rest of the trip, the participant kept asking me if I was okay, and telling me that I was doing “fine” and “just great” and trying to console me and make me feel better. It was so awesome! The table was turned and she was taking care of me, not even thinking about herself anymore. And she was having fun to. She started talking about what a great time she was having, and how much she liked horses!

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