Wild and free

giveupThere was a horse competing at an equestrian event on the weekend who went by the name “Flexible”, and this little horse has some big history.

Flexible is a Show Jumping World Cup Champion horse who also competes in the Olympics for the U.S. — sounds normal enough. The thing is, this horse is 20-years-old which, in human years, translates to 60 and early in his career he overcame two devastating, major injuries.

A blocked vein in 2004 and a torn left shoulder in 2006, veterinarians were not optimistic that Flexible would return to jumping.

“But Flexible had other ideas,” said his rider Rich Fellers. “He is a super-tough horse.”

He went on to garner some big victories that culminated in a 2012 World Cup victory that ended an American drought of 25 years.

And there he was, still jumping around the track on Sunday with the energy of a young colt.

Maybe this was a special message for those of us struggling in life, those who are about to give up, or those locked down.

This story is for those of us whose diagnosis isn’t good.

Don’t lose hope.
Keep pushing forward.
Fight on, because there is always someone who believes in you.

We need to start believing in each other because as a nation we are also like Flexible. A smallpox epidemic in the 17th century wiped out 90 to 95 per cent of us and then in the 19th century our survivors were rounded up and put into residential schools and reserves.

It’s been so long we nearly forgot who we really are. We are the title holders. We are the champions, my friends.

Right now it’s like we’re that horse — Flexible — recovering in the stable. But, soon we will burst out of here at top speed running wild and free, healthy and strong.

We’ve got to encourage each other and encourage ourselves when no one else will. There are those of us who go hard in the paint each and every day — and others who seem to be down and out. Life has them on their backs.

Maybe they had a major disaster in their life or maybe they are taking a time out for a couple years. Everybody is stressed out and exhausted.

Let’s try to understand each other and not pass judgment.

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