Like I have said, I have (had) two sisters. I am the youngest. The child mom was not supposed to have. On a regular basis she reminded me that she almost died giving birth to me. Talk about Jewish guilt (yep I am one of the tribe). My sisters resemble each other and they resemble my mom. Me not so much. They are/were fair skinned, with blondish hair and very blue eyes. Physically their facial features are the same…same nose, shape of the face etc. again, me not so much. I look like my dad. I have his facial features; his straight nose, clef in my chin and my favorite feature the uni-brow. In addition, I have dark brown hair, hazel to grey eyes and very dark skin. I tan something fierce!
From a very young age, I was told that I was adopted. Born in Philadelphia, we moved to Florida when I was 3, so the teasing was that I was a Seminole Indian child. But even more disturbing is the story that I was left, in my stroller, in front of the monkey cage at the Philadelphia Zoo. Evidently mom and the entire family forgot I was with them! Again, another reason for my trust issues….🐒. As a teen, my oldest sister told me I was Dad’s love child. The Diana Ross song was popular in our house for a while.
Physical feature aside, I am just different from my siblings. Maybe it is because I am the youngest, I don’t know. I have different interests. For one thing I was the athlete (what a hoot!) in the family. I rode a bike at the age of four, ran around with the boys in my neighborhood and was constantly dirty. I showed up so dirty one evening that my mom turned the hose on me before letting me in the house. I was on a swim team, learned to snow ski first and aspired to be part of the “in crowd” at school. But the biggest difference was my attraction to horses. Where does something like that come from? Nobody in my very clean family ever exposed me to them, took me to see them or wanted anything to do with them. But I came out into the world craving that horsey smell…you know the sweet smell of their breath.
This is Cisco and Gina. My resident equines. I took me a long time to become a horse owner. When I was in first grade my mom and grandmom picked me up from school on my birthday and said we were going to a farm. Surely I was getting a horse! We drove and drove and I got so excited I may have wet my pants. When we got there, it turned out to be a dog breeder. I got a beagle that year. Loved her to death, but she was NOT a horse.
I did the lesson route starting at age 10. By then we lived in Virginia where everyone rode English. So English it was. I took lessons off and on until high school where I discovered that I really like boys too. I put my riding on hold, but still craved their touch and smell. It wasn’t until after I was divorced that I went back to riding. When I met my husband, he encouraged me to own my first. Now he has built me a lovely paddock and barn and I have these two beauties. My barn is my happy place, my solace. I have spent hours in there since my sister died. Trying to understand how life happens. All I know is that for me, life is better with these magnificent animals in it. I don’t think I will ever be without them again.
My family never did understand me. My middle sis, the only remaining member of my immediate family is trying hard. I love her dearly for trying. In my last conversation with my mother, she asked if I had gotten tired of my horses yet, and when was I going to sell my farm; move back to the city. She never did get it, or me for that matter. I spent my life trying to be what she wanted, but now I just want to be me. Dirty, with hay in my hair and horsey drool on my shoulder!