Three Words that Changed My Life Forever…..

Just follow these steps- Hershey points the way!

I had two cancers, one was Invasive and the other was a pre-cancer. One would respond to chemo, the other would need to be surgically removed. I started chemo on October 18, 2017. That was the day that sealed my fate. I was receiving mustard gas, and it took two weeks for me to lose my thick mop of golden blonde hair that was my trademark.

I also learned that cancer tears at your soul. There is a brevity in all of the appointments, in the faces of the patients and the staff that cares for us. Precariously we stand on the precipice of life and death.

Cancer is not what necessarily kills you, but the treatments, surgery, and side effects of these chemicals that they pour into your veins. By the third chemo, I had been in and out of the hospital so many times, that I was a frequent flyer to our little country hospital. They would even call me by my first name before I even registered.

My white blood count was down to a mere 600, it should be 12,000. My liver was shutting down and my gray skin and black eyes staring back at me, confirmed what I knew. I was dying. Right in front of me, I saw a skeleton with gray skin, black circles under my eyes, and it was then that I knew what I had to do. I was going to stop the chemo.

The beauty of knowing the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, meant that I had total peace that He would embrace His child, me. Was my mansion on streets of glory ready to receive me?

My husband was horrified when I told him that I was stopping the chemo. “Please don’t Jill! I need you to live and beat this, you must give the doctors a chance to beat this too. Please don’t stop,” my big burly husband was trying to hide the tears that began to fall.

After fifteen years of marriage, there was something he knew, I was a fighter and resolute in decisions. He knew there was no turning back.

I had lost thirty-five pounds, lost all interest in reading God’s precious Word, praying, or growing closer to Him. It was just too much to bear. What is there to life, if I cannot grow closer to the One that I love with all of my heart?

Darkness was turning to dawn. I felt lighter and brighter in hope that my body would strengthen and spill out these poisons. After three weeks of stopping chemo, I could eat, not that I could keep it down, but I tried.

Funny now, but it wasn’t then. Dan would time everything so that I could get a clean shot to the bathroom after I ate. One time, I did not make it and he carried me to the bathroom while I cried over the mess. By the time I got out of the bathroom, he had cleaned it all up. Grateful for his kindness.

My doctors were very, very mad at me.

“This is your life. why would you stop what can save your life?” she tipped her head back, squinting at this weird subject in front of her that was not going to do everything she told it to do. She was perplexed at this pint sized specimen.

“My life is not here, and it is all well with my soul.”

“Whatever!” I made no sense to her and the disgust was palpable. “I am scheduling all of the tests to begin next week and we will go to surgery in two weeks,” and with that I was dismissed.

Two weeks later I was back in her office as she was going to go over the results, she pushed her glasses back and kept staring at the report. Her lips pursed together, her eyebrows lifting quizzically. Finally after a long sigh, she spoke, “Jill, I just don’t understand, but …………………….”

TO BE CONTINUED…………………………..

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Three Words That Changed My Life….continued

beautiful summer day at farm

 

The journey that I never wanted to go on was commencing and it was during this time that I learned that a battle was raging, not in my body, but in my mind………

My prayers are ALWAYS for protection.  I am an offensive prayer.  I try to think of everything that could ever happen and pray against it.  Cancer is always my biggest one to rebuke and rebuff.  I thought I was covered under the blood of Jesus.  I am a believer in Jesus and His healing power, never doubted, not once.

“God, what do you want me to learn through this?” I implored in the early morning hours of August 31st.

“I want you to be able to relate to others, and for them to relate to you,” His still quiet voice spoke into my spirit.

“Ok, God, I want to learn.  Please Lord, help me to go through this with your victory and countenance” I said through tears.

What I learned would change my life……

 

Never Fear the Nuggets are Here!

IMG_0382The large rambling mansion held bedrooms that boasted of ample sitting areas and soaking-tubs in each bathroom.  It was a beautiful home and truly the talk of the town.  If I was describing where I lived, I would say I am right near the big yellow mansion and then my home could be identified.  Unfortunately its hefty price tag was too burdensome for most home owners.  My riding students and their families would frequently gaze at the mansion next door that stood vacant for over eight years and fantasize over living right next door to what they considered a dream.

To my utter surprise it was bought by a young family with six children ranging in age from two to nine.  Their mother is a tiny dynamo and she quickly shared why they chose to move from northern New Jersey to this little town in southern New Jersey, it was because it was next to horses.  Her girls had begun to ride horses in northern New Jersey and they all seemed to have been bitten by the “horse bug” and it could only be satisfied by close proximity of a horse farm.  It also helped that each of their back windows gazed out on my pastures where they could watch the horses daily.

The girls each enrolled in lessons and they would frequently ask if I needed help.  Of course I needed help, and this little next-door-army of helping hands were eager to organize the riding ring for the special needs children that came from a local school or muck stalls.

Each one had something different to offer.  The oldest, a determined young lady that soaked up everything that was taught.  I would mention something in passing and she had it memorized.  She was also eager to employ it, and I found myself giving her more responsibility each day.  She was a child I could trust because she knew that this was an earned spot at the farm.  The second to oldest child fell madly in love with our big Quarter Horse Paint.  She would ask me if she could meet her goal of riding him.  The day I allowed her on his back, she could not stop smiling or fawning over his massive body that glistened in the sun.  She would explain every little nuisance of each lesson.  She would critique how the horse did and how she handled it.  She was the one that would explain each goal she had and whether she thought she could achieve it.  The youngest one had an iron core.  She was tiny but undeterred and the day that Milkshake decided to do a drive-thru and grab a quick bite to eat of the luscious grass when she was leading him back to the field demonstrated her grit, because he had stepped on her little foot.  She squeaked and Milkshake quickly lifted his foot.  She hobbled over to the chair and we put ice on it, but her face was set, she would never let a horse do that to her again.

Everything has a nickname here.  After proving their unwavering devotion to the farm and our horses, we christened them THE NUGGETS.  We have grown quite fond of their generous spirit and desire to do their best.  It is quite refreshing to find children that love to please others.

They remind me of the verse in Galatians 5:13-

…..serve one another humbly in love.

They reflect what we all need to do for one another, seek to serve.

Do you know someone that has served you? Please share.

Zelda Speaks Love Without a Sound

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Zelda has never spoken or written a single word in her life, but she writes everyday letters of love and hope on the hearts of those she has touched.  I’m blessed enough to say that I have witnessed it firsthand.

Zelda was born with cerebral palsy that crippled the left side of her body and in response her hands and feet have turned inward, making that part of her body useless.

No one is certain why she can’t speak or why she can’t hear.  But last night she heard the silent cry of a young woman in anguish and she answered it with all the love she has inside of her colossal heart.

Chrissy is twenty years old but looks more like she is forty.  Her life has left her heart broken.  She cannot speak and signs only two words Mommy and Hungry.  Her mom was unable to care for her once she reached adulthood, and she made the difficult decision to allow her to be with adults similar to her.  She found it in a wonderful group home for adults where she is cared for tirelessly by the most wonderful people who truly care about her.

On this particular Thursday she came to equine therapy with a sad face.  She was uncomfortable and frequently picked at her pants.  She was not going to ride because she seemed upset and she would whimper periodically no matter how much we wanted to see her buddy, Buttons, the fat pony.  She would shake her head vehemently and sit resolutely in our comfy Adirondack chairs.

That’s when Zelda came to the rescue.  With her numb leg she drug herself across the yard, which is the equivalent of crossing the Mohave Desert.  She sat in the chair next to Chrissy and tried to speak.  Her lips curled and her tongue puckered as dribble washed down her face.  She didn’t care; she wanted Chrissy to know she cared.  It did not matter that only grunts came out, her eyes and genuine smile said it all.

Zelda looked at me and signed love and then she pointed at Chrissy.  In her poignant and loving way, Zelda spoke the language everyone wants to hear- someone cares!

Zelda, you amaze me everyday!  I am the one who is richer for knowing a champion that conquerors everyday battles that all of us take for granted.  You do it all with a smile or giggle.

Keep loving all the people that you meet because I am the woman you have most changed!

Barbie and Her Best Friend

palominoBang!…Bang!…..BANG!….BANG!

The dogs go into a furious rage of barking, Dan and I leap out of bed.

“What is that?” he asks.

BANG!…..BANG!

“Dan, someone is banging on our door!” As a horse owner this can only mean one thing- OUR HORSES ARE OUT!

Dan I racing downstairs to be greeted by the State Police with a flood light fixed on our fields.

“We got a call, loose horses on this street, we are asking all horse farms to check and see if their horses are secure,” a boyish-looking-fresh-out-of-college officer stated in his best officer voice.

Dan ran out in the fields, our horses and ponies were all accounted for, phew!

Then my attention turned to we-have-to-get-these-loose-horses.

What got me was the officer’s description-

“One is real big and looks like a Barbie and the other horse is orange with a blue jacket.”

I tried not to laugh- he was describing the big palomino across the street and her best friend, a chestnut with a blue blanket on.

After wrestling the loose horses back into the barn, I said a silent prayer of thankfulness.

We climbed back into bed, thankful that our horses were safe, always had been.

Why?

Because we believe in the power of prayer, and the God of heaven and earth has my farm under his careful watch! THANK YOU FATHER!

 

Be Still and Know that I AM GOD!

In the rush of life, sometimes it is just good to be still, pray, and allow God to work in my life.  My students start every lesson off with prayer.  They have come to recognize the importance of asking God to be with them as they ride and work around 1500 pound animals that could spook because a simple plastic bag is flying across a field.  It is here that we begin with the most important aspect of RAISE YOUR DREAMS FARM!

Do you need peace?  Be still, pray, and allow God to work it all out!

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The Amazing Suzanne

The amazing Suzanne
The amazing Suzanne

The one constant in Suzanne’s life, is her camera. She snaps pictures of the horses, clouds, her kids, moments, and all of these memories spill out onto her Facebook Page, Twitter Account, or Snap Chat.

One day my students were having a hard time trying to get one of the horses to go into another field. That’s when Suzanne told the kids she would get the horse to move and she did not even need a halter or leadline.

The kids stood back, as she walked into the field, complete with purple hair, high heels, and spiky red fingernails. They smirked as she waded into the mud. She tiptoed, pirouetted, and hopped over the big puddles. My seasoned students wanted to see this and a small crowd gathered at the fence to watch this larger-than-life parent wrestle our 1500 pound Hershey into the other field.

Hershey eyed her, and that’s when she grabbed her ever ready phone camera out of her back pocket.

“What a handsome man!” she coyly cooed.

The horse stood at attention and she started snapping pictures. He turned from side to side, enjoying her accolades and the snapping of her camera.

She slowly walked into the other field and he followed her like a big dog.

“See kids, that’s how it is done!” she flipped her hands through her purple hair and smiled broadly.

This woman just “schooled” my kids in how to get a horse to become putty in her hands.

Is That Steve?

I think I see Steve! Timmy pointed to a little dot flying high in the sky.

Hmmm, you think that’s Steve?

Yup, that’s him! He has come back to say thank you.

The bird descended slowly as it rode the thermal air stream. Was this my imagination?

See, that’s him!

How do you know? I asked.

Because he loves me. Timmy’s smile said it all.

Well, by golly I do think it is Steve. I patted Timmy’s back in agreement.

And with that the bird let out a piercing scream as if on cue.

Steve is a hawk that Timmy and I rescued after its parents had died. We found it on the ground and Timmy became the bird whisperer that day. He calmed the very big bird down by wrapping his arms around it and cradling it like a baby. We took it to a bird rescue and the woman was incredulous when I told her that Timmy picked it up. She told me it was a miracle. Most people would have been torn up she said and showed me a few nasty scars. That day Timmy named this majestic animal Steve. A few months later I got a notice that Steve had been freed into the wild. Ever since then Timmy has scoured the skies searching for his beloved friend. I guess today he came back to say hi to his human friend and rescuersteve-rescuer, Timmy.

Timmy smiled broadly reassured that surely Steve had come back. I’m always amazed at Timmy’s faith and simple belief that surely God would give him this sweet gift of knowing the simple truth- WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE!

Fighting for the Finish- Chapter 1 Concludes

There was no way I could I explain, rationalize, work through, or find a solution to help me with this force that was unseen and unnamed.

 

I composed myself and started to let the last horse out, a beautiful Palomino Quarter Horse named Que. He was my favorite horse at the farm. His personality was quirky and he was always full of mischief. His favorite treat was honey buns and he loved to torture me by pulling on my clothing looking for the elusive honey bun that I would hide in a side pocket. He was quite a handful to lead because he would use his lips to tickle me. I spoiled him terribly. He was a great lesson horse and one of the favorite mounts for my students to ride. He always made me laugh, and I needed one now.

 

The sun glimmered in the sky and I heard the faint sound of a faraway owl. I could also hear the barn phone ringing. I knew I would never be able to reach it, so I took my time putting Que out into his paddock. I held up the honey bun and he greedily ate it. Then he licked my hands and I kissed his beautiful and dignified face. I let him graze on the sweet grass outside of the barn and buried my head in his strong neck. His sweet aroma gave me comfort, and I desired that more than ever. He pulled his head up as if to reassure me and I scratched him under his chin. I reluctantly put him out and secured his gate with two chains. He was a real Houdini and could undo any lock with those infamous lips of his. He stood watching me, and I told him there would be no loose horses on my watch. I reluctantly left him, not knowing what I would face once I got back to the barn.

 

As I rounded the entrance to the barn, I could hear the phone ringing again. Sharon met me in the barn office and sat on the sofa across from the desk. She wanted to say something, but there was nothing to say. I was slowly losing all dignity and control over myself. I placed my head in my hands and then wiped my eyes.

 

“I can’t take this anymore,” I said, fighting back tears. This is destroying me. The truth is I’m scared. I can’t fight this by myself. I am ill-equipped,” I said.

 

Sharon said nothing, but her face said it all. She knew that there was something here, a presence that was menacing and looming in every room, every stall. Its ominous and threatening presence hung over us like a dank odor. It intimidated us and convinced us that we were at its mercy. The jail sentence had been handed out, and what we were guilty of we did not know or understand.

 

The phone rang again. This time I did not hold it to my ear; instead I picked it up and slammed it down.  Anger recoiled like a snake and it lifted its ugly head from the depths of my soul. I gritted my teeth and grunted. Sharon sat with a look of horror on her face. We were both terrified.

 

I had met Sharon at the high school I was working at in the fall of 1990. She was the school nurse, and I taught special education. We had similar personalities, as we were both nurturing and caring. We loved the students, and we would mutually come to the same conclusions in helping many of our most difficult charges. We would encourage each other every day and would frequently spend the evening discussing the intimate details of our trials and tribulations. It was during this time that she started attending a small country church, after she discovered that her husband no longer wanted to stay married to her. It devastated Sharon. She found strength and peace in getting to know God. Frequently she would share the pastor’s lessons and teachings with me. I listened half-heartedly, for truthfully, I did not really believe in God.

 

Abruptly Sharon said, “I have an idea. Let me call my pastor, his name is Don, and he is wonderful. I told him about you last night, and I explained what has been happening here. He told me to tell you that you should call him.”

 

“No, Sharon,” I said. “I don’t want to talk to a pastor. What is he going to do?” I was incredulous. To me pastors were weak people with stiff personalities. Talking to a pastor, I thought, would be a waste of my time.

 

The phone rang again. I guess this was the theme for today. On other days, it manifested itself through strange noises, either humming in low frequency or loud banging, or chairs would move, lights would go on and off; or music would play reverberating through the house’s speakers. Today it was driving me crazy with a ringing phone. I shook my head as tears welled in my eyes. As I accidentally hit the bump that was now the size of a softball under my arm, I winced in pain, recalling the first assault of the day.

 

Sharon picked up the phone while I busied myself with straightening the papers on the desk. I knew who she was calling. I glanced at the wall clock; it was barely seven in the morning.

 

“Pastor Don,” she said, “I’m sorry to call you this early, but it seems that things are out of control here and I think Jill needs to talk to you. Remember, she is the girl who is staying at her friend’s farm while the family is on vacation? Yes, it is starting again, but it has never happened this early or intensely before. She was stung by a bee and the phone has been ringing incessantly with no one on the line. Would you like to talk to her?” She paused and then handed me the phone. She held the phone at arm’s length, and with her free arm, she waved frantically like she was holding the keys of hope for those in despair.

 

I vehemently shook my head and placed my arms across my chest to show that I would not take the phone, nor talk to her pastor.   I continued with my business of organizing the papers until she held the phone up to my face, and then she did the unthinkable, she walked away, forcing me to pick it up.

 

I held the phone up to my ear with trepidation. Choked with frustration, my voice came out cracked and weak, as I uttered “Hello.”

 

“Is this Jill?” His gentle voice was calmly reassuring.

 

“Yes, I understand that Sharon told you about me and what we are experiencing here,” I said. His calm voice evoked a feeling of peace, and I longed for it like nothing else before. I was like a weary traveler longing for rest, and his voice was a soft, downy pillow that was oddly comforting my soul.

 

“Yes, Sharon did tell me about you and where you are staying. I actually know the place. If I am correct it is one of the oldest historic sites in New Jersey. What exactly are you experiencing there?”

 

He wanted to know every detail. Like a faucet, I turned on the spigots full blast and spilled out the whole story. The music that would blare out of unseen speakers in the house, the TV that would change channels and how the volume would rise and fall without being touched, the chair that scraped across the wooden floor even though no one was near it, the chandelier that would only partially light, the screaming fight I heard on the balcony outside the bedroom that I was staying in the first night. I told him about the banging and thumping that would permeate the house and that no matter how hard I searched, I could not find the source. I shared how I would turn the lights off and as soon as I got to the balcony, every single light in the house would go on.

 

 

I told him about how my faithful dog, Amy, refused to step foot in certain rooms. She would whimper and at times her hair would stand up around her neck and she would snarl as if she were protecting me. She would stare and follow an invisible force that seemed to float above her. I told him about the flickering barn lights, the red welt under my arm, and the persistent phone ringing with a dead line as soon as I answered.

 

I realized I had been recalling all of these weird happenings without taking a breath. My heart was pounding and I began to involuntarily nervously pace in the small office.

 

Pointedly, I asked, “Am I in danger?”

 

He took a deep breath and said, “Yes, I do believe you are. Accept Jesus as your personal savior. He is the only one that has the power to break the stronghold of these demons. Once you ask Jesus into your heart, His blood will cover your sins, and you will be His. No one will be able to mess with you. You will have the power to overcome these demonic forces that are” he paused for a moment; “quite obviously harassing you. Now would you like to accept Jesus as your personal savior?”

 

He had put a name to these forces, demons. I had watched scary movies of supernatural forces, but I did not think that they actually existed. I was frightened and confused. Why were they harassing me? I wondered.

 

All I could think of was how much I disliked Christians. They always seemed so judgmental and condemning. Pastor Don was just the opposite, though. He had a soft, soothing voice, and it seemed that he had a lot of experience with people who were in trouble or frightened. He was calming me by putting a name to these frightening occurrences and most importantly he held out a solution. He talked about blood and the cleansing of sins. However, I felt I did not fit in with the other sinners of the world. I reasoned that I was a good person and that my sins were not all that bad.

 

He continued to talk about the blood of Christ, that all people are sinners and that they need a savior. I half-heartedly listened as he spoke, as I had always believed that Christians were crazy and I didn’t want to be one of them. I could not comprehend powers that I could not see, yet I seemed to be in the midst of them. It seemed that the only thing I was certain of was that I did not want to be a born-again Christian. I liked my life the way it was, and I was certain that it would go back to normal once I left this place. All I needed to do was leave this disturbed house and farm, and I reasoned that would be happening in precisely two short days, sixteen hours and thirty minutes.

 

“No thanks,” I said emphatically. I did not want to accept Jesus as my personal savior.

 

No sooner had I said those words than the phone started to ring while I was on it. I held the phone away from my ear and stared quizzically at it. Sharon quickly came back into the office thinking my conversation had ended. I motioned to her that I was still speaking with Pastor Don, but the phone was ringing again. Impossible, there was no other phone line. How could the phone be ringing while I am on the phone? My mind raced ahead. Would I be in this condition forever? Would I be harassed by demons for the rest of my life? Surely this was supernatural and demonic.

 

“If I accept Jesus as my personal savior, will this stop?” I asked, as the unremitting ringing of the phone interrupted my thoughts, and I began losing my concentration. What I really wanted at that moment was rest and, more importantly, peace. I knew this pastor had the answer for me.

 

“I don’t know,” Pastor Don replied. “What I do know is that if you accept Jesus you will have the power to come against these demonic forces because He will be in you.   Therefore, you will also have His power. Jill, whether you realize this or not, you are in a dangerous place. It is not only dangerous for you physically but spiritually as well. Jesus is the only one who can help you now. God, the father, Jesus, the son, and the Holy Spirit are the only ones that can help you now. I won’t be able to help you, Sharon won’t be able to help you, no one will be able to help you, except Jesus.” He said this so forcefully that I was frightened. I knew deep in my heart that what he was saying was the truth.

 

The phone continued to ring, interrupting our conversation. His words soaked into my brain. I was faced with the reality that I would not be able to escape this harassment, and it pierced the core of my being. A perfect compromise appeared and I leapt at the chance to use Jesus at this time to get rid of these forces. This was a viable solution to me. Then, I believed, I could forget all about this and resume my normal life.

 

“Okay, how do I accept Jesus into my life?” I asked, as the ringing continued.

 

He took a deep breath, and said, “First you need to confess that you are a sinner. Then you need to ask Him to wash you clean of your sins. Ask Him to dwell in your heart. That’s all.”

 

“But how do I accept Jesus?” The simplicity of salvation hadn’t sunk in yet. There must be more to it than this, I thought.

 

“Why don’t you repeat after what I say?” He didn’t wait for me to respond, he just plunged forward. “Jesus, I recognize that I am a sinner (he paused for me to repeat him). I ask that you wash me clean of my sins (he paused). Come dwell in my heart Jesus (another pause),” he said.

 

After I said the prayer, relief and peace inundated my thoughts and permeated my being. The phone had finally stopped ringing, and I felt free. In that brief moment of prayer directed by the pastor, I knew that something had happened inside of me. I knew that somehow I was different. I was hoping that all of this would stop and life would become normal again. Little did I know that things would get a lot worse before they would ever get better.

(I have never written a book before, but this concludes the first chapter.  What do you think?  Has it captivated your interest?  Your feedback is valuable and I thank you for your honest thoughts)

Fighting for the Finish- Continues

“That is weird,” she said looking at the clock. “It is only 6:30 in the morning. Who do you think was calling?” she asked, as the cute little calico kitten jumped into her lap and she fed it a tiny piece of her croissant.

 

“I don’t know. I hope it wasn’t Beth,” I responded, knowing I have a tendency to think the worst. I didn’t want Beth to know that I wasn’t staying at her house at night. I would come early in the morning and then leave around nine or ten at night. Every day I would set the home alarm and take her gigantic black Doberman Pincher, Alfred, to my house to share my bed with me and my dog, Amy. I wanted her to enjoy her vacation. I didn’t want to bother her with any suspicion that anything was amiss at her home. I admitted that I couldn’t even formulate exactly why I couldn’t stay there.

 

We began our routine of letting the horses out one at a time into their designated pastures. I would start at one end, and Sharon would start at the other end. I took out the boarding horses and Sharon took out the docile lesson horses. At the end was a beautiful black Thoroughbred named Thunder. He was over seventeen hands high and his presence struck awe in all that met him. I reached up to attach the lead line to his leather halter and opened the door wide to get him to his pasture twenty feet away.

 

As soon as my foot graced the threshold, the phone rang.

 

I pushed Thunder back into his stall, and he unhappily shook his head at me. I ran as fast as I could to the office. I pushed the door open so hard that it knocked into the door stop and all of the papers on the desk flew off. I was determined to get this call. Again all I heard was the “nnnnnnnnnnn” sound of an empty line. I sat on top of the desk puzzled. It was now 6:42 and there had already been two calls. Someone must need me, I thought.

 

I started to gather the papers and neatly place them on the desk. I waited for a few minutes until I heard Thunder’s whinny for me to come back to reality and set him free. I left the office door open so that there would be nothing but a clear shot from the stalls to the phone.

 

I snapped the lead on Thunder once again, and as soon as my foot hit the cool concrete of the aisle, the phone blared out again, piercing the air. I pushed the big black Thoroughbred back into the stall again. This time, he jerked around and tried to pull me back into the aisle. He pinned his ears and made a menacing face as if he meant to harm me if I didn’t let him go. I insisted and shut the stall door just in time as his teeth bore down at me.

 

The feet of a gazelle could not have run faster than mine, and I slid across the desk like a baseball player rounding for home. But it was all to no avail, as I reached for the phone all I heard was that same “nnnnnnnnnnn” sound.  I slammed the phone back into its cradle. This time I pulled the phone off of the desk. As it precariously sat in the aisle, it would be easier for me to reach should it ring again.

 

I walked back to Thunder, and told him that I was sorry. He paced and pranced in the stall arching his neck, and each muscle rippling in the sunlight. He did not trust me, and I could not blame the big fellow. I opened the door and started to walk him outside into the crisp beautiful morning. He started to pull in anticipation of having a great gallop around the field.

 

As soon as I let him off of the lead, he reared and struck the air with purpose. As he landed, the sound of thunder could be heard from his mighty hooves. Then he sprang into a full gallop, completing five large bucks.   He was beautiful and majestic. Glancing over his shoulder, he paused to see if I was watching his grandiose show of power and might, and then he shook his head as if he knew I was admiring his antics.

 

Suddenly I heard the faint ringing of the barn phone. I sprang into action, running like a world-class sprinter. In record time, which even Steve Prefontaine, the world’s greatest runner, would have had a hard time to beat, I jumped across the aisle and impressively reached for the phone. Breathlessly, I breathed into the receiver and heard the aggravating “nnnnnnnnnn” sound of a dead phone.

 

 

I screamed as loud as I could, “I hate this haunted, weird, demonic place! I can’t take it anymore! I want out of here!” I voiced what I had repressed over the past few days that the truth of it caught me off guard. I was in a place of uncertainty and strife, where I was not in control, and its unfamiliarity made me angry……………….

Read more tomorrow………………………