And so it begins!
Today is the first day of the Extreme Mustang Makeover in Lexington, Kentucky. My 16-year-old daughter, Cat, is competing in her sixth competition. Well, fifth since her second mustang had to scratch at the last minute due to surgery for colic.
I’m nervous for all of the competitors. They have spent 100 days training wild mustangs for this weekend. And a lot goes into taming and training these magnificent creatures.
One of the things I love about the Extreme Mustang Makeover is the other competitors. Some of them are so kind and helpful, helping each other and cheering them on. This year, in the adult division, I’m really happy to get to know the Wadmans even more. Kaitlyn is competing with Slick, a gorgeous black mustang that I would adopt in a heartbeat! Unfortunately, my husband and daughter would have a thing or two to say about that. 🤨 But Kaitlyn and her mother, Cheryl, have always been so kind to both me and Cat. I love good salt of the earth people! (And I still want that horse!!!! So well trained and sweet!)
Over the years, I’ve gotten to know quite a few of these trainers. People’s true colors come out when they train a wild horse. How they handle stress and setbacks teaches a lot about their true character. Some handle it like champs. Others like real sneaky turkeys. 🦃
This is a humbling experience. No one is superior to others. I’m proud of my daughter for not putting on airs or acting as if she is better than anyone else. She helps others, talks to everyone, and learns from them along the way while sharing her own knowledge. Sometimes she’s a bit stubborn, always wanting to do it herself and not having hands-on help from other trainers—I appreciate that. But she has learned to listen and incorporate what she hears and sees into her own reservoir of knowledge.
She’s become quite a mature young woman, appreciative of what she learns and willing to give back.
Isn’t that a lesson everyone should learn? Nothing is worse than people who think something is owed to them or who gets angry when things don’t go their way. Life isn’t about being given things but earning them! It’s about looking in the mirror and being honest about your contributions to your own situation.
I wish more youths and young adults could participate in this amazing program run by the Mustang Heritage Foundation. Even the least experienced among the trainers have learned more than most people will learn in a lifetime.
Good luck to ALL of the competitors. Frankly, in my mind, they are all winners for training these horses on their own.