animal kingdom / celebrations / DAILY FARM LIFE / FAITH / family / life on thomas run / LIVING WELL / MOTHERHOOD

joy in the sorrow

09.06.11

Last May, I shared about the passing of my friend and neighbor, Sarah. 

But one thing I didn't tell you in that story was my last "conversation" with Sarah before she died. 

DSC_0037

Just days before, she sent me several messages through twitter (of all places) curious to know if we had any interest in her pony, Ariel. 

If you've been reading this blog long enough, you'll know that my daughter Emma is a horse girl. From her depths, the girl loves horses. Childhood "passions" come and go, but Emma's love of horses has only grown deeper roots in her little heart. 

She has been riding and taking lessons since we moved back to Maryland. I watch this video of her, four years ago and I am reminded that she has been waiting for "a pony of her own" for quite a long time. 

But a pony is no small commitment. If I had a dollar for every time I answered the question, "When do you think I'll be ready for a pony of my own?", I'd have enough dollars for seven ponies by now. Aside from being old enough for a pony, or having enough know-how, the big, glaring issue was right outside my kitchen window. 

A farm with no fencing. 

You can ask any of my close friends to know that I've been trying to figure out ways to get this little farm of ours started, to find the money in our squeezed-tight budget for fencing. (It is SO expensive!) Should I do something on kickstarter? Should I get a job? Should I make stuff and sell it on etsy?

Meanwhile, I'm telling my anxious daughter that some day the time will be right. Pray, I say. God knows your heart. And He already knows the perfect pony for you. And He knows when the time will be right. 

I often needed to remind myself of the same things. 

When Sarah sent me those series of messages, asking if we were interested, something jumped in my heart. 

Little did she know, that many of our errands brought us driving right past her house. That Emma would often get quiet in the back seat, hiding her tears–not just for a pony, but for Ariel. "She's the perfect pony for me. I don't think they have anyone riding her right now. Do you think they'd ever sell her?"  And I'd give her my same words of wisdom, which by now she could probably recite to me by heart. Pray. Wait. When the time is right….

joy in the sorrow

That morning, when Sarah asked me, I immediately got on the phone with Dan. Teary, nervous. I had no idea that Sarah was just days from the end of her fight, but I knew this was one of those things she needed to settle. 

Dan simply said, "Tell her yes. We'll just have to figure the rest out."

We didn't tell Emma anything. The heartbreak if anything fell through would have been horrible. 

The man who owns the barn where Emma has been riding for the last several years said to bring Ariel there. She could stay until we were ready. For free. A gift.

joy in the sorrow

But for a handful, Emma spent every morning this summer at the barn–taking care of Ariel, learning from the wonderful people who work and board their horses there, from my stepmother, who has taught her everything she knows. 

Eventually, with all this planning and fussing, she began to put the pieces together. 

joy in the sorrow

"Is Ariel going to be mine?" 

Finally, last week, in the middle of the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, Ariel arrived home. 

joy in the sorrow

By perfect timing (and God'd faithfulness to Emma's prayers, I believe) we found the funds for fencing. While we were in Virginia, a team of Amishmen descended on our farm and installed it.

Everything has come together. The timing is finally right. 

DSC_0029

And there, in the midst of the sorrow of losing Sarah, is the big, bright glow of joy. She's sitting bareback on a pony grazing in my back yard. 

 

Last May, I shared about the passing of my friend and neighbor, Sarah. 

But one thing I didn't tell you in that story was my last "conversation" with Sarah before she died. 

DSC_0037

Just days before, she sent me several messages through twitter (of all places) curious to know if we had any interest in her pony, Ariel. 

If you've been reading this blog long enough, you'll know that my daughter Emma is a horse girl. From her depths, the girl loves horses. Childhood "passions" come and go, but Emma's love of horses has only grown deeper roots in her little heart. 

She has been riding and taking lessons since we moved back to Maryland. I watch this video of her, four years ago and I am reminded that she has been waiting for "a pony of her own" for quite a long time. 

But a pony is no small commitment. If I had a dollar for every time I answered the question, "When do you think I'll be ready for a pony of my own?", I'd have enough dollars for seven ponies by now. Aside from being old enough for a pony, or having enough know-how, the big, glaring issue was right outside my kitchen window. 

A farm with no fencing. 

You can ask any of my close friends to know that I've been trying to figure out ways to get this little farm of ours started, to find the money in our squeezed-tight budget for fencing. (It is SO expensive!) Should I do something on kickstarter? Should I get a job? Should I make stuff and sell it on etsy?

Meanwhile, I'm telling my anxious daughter that some day the time will be right. Pray, I say. God knows your heart. And He already knows the perfect pony for you. And He knows when the time will be right. 

I often needed to remind myself of the same things. 

When Sarah sent me those series of messages, asking if we were interested, something jumped in my heart. 

Little did she know, that many of our errands brought us driving right past her house. That Emma would often get quiet in the back seat, hiding her tears–not just for a pony, but for Ariel. "She's the perfect pony for me. I don't think they have anyone riding her right now. Do you think they'd ever sell her?"  And I'd give her my same words of wisdom, which by now she could probably recite to me by heart. Pray. Wait. When the time is right….

joy in the sorrow

That morning, when Sarah asked me, I immediately got on the phone with Dan. Teary, nervous. I had no idea that Sarah was just days from the end of her fight, but I knew this was one of those things she needed to settle. 

Dan simply said, "Tell her yes. We'll just have to figure the rest out."

We didn't tell Emma anything. The heartbreak if anything fell through would have been horrible. 

The man who owns the barn where Emma has been riding for the last several years said to bring Ariel there. She could stay until we were ready. For free. A gift.

joy in the sorrow

But for a handful, Emma spent every morning this summer at the barn–taking care of Ariel, learning from the wonderful people who work and board their horses there, from my stepmother, who has taught her everything she knows. 

Eventually, with all this planning and fussing, she began to put the pieces together. 

joy in the sorrow

"Is Ariel going to be mine?" 

Finally, last week, in the middle of the aftermath of Hurricane Irene, Ariel arrived home. 

joy in the sorrow

By perfect timing (and God'd faithfulness to Emma's prayers, I believe) we found the funds for fencing. While we were in Virginia, a team of Amishmen descended on our farm and installed it.

Everything has come together. The timing is finally right. 

DSC_0029

And there, in the midst of the sorrow of losing Sarah, is the big, bright glow of joy. She's sitting bareback on a pony grazing in my back yard. 

 

57 comments on “joy in the sorrow”

  1. The picture of your daughter and Ariel brought tears to my eyes. What a beautiful connection. Reward for your daughter’s patience and Ariel seems to know she is in the best hands.

  2. Having followed your blog for some time, this is such wonderful news to hear for Emma. Her own horse. Such a blessing on so many levels.

  3. Well I must say not much usually makes me teary eyed but this one sure did. It is an amazing thing when any little girl gets thier first horse and how this came about is even more special. Enjoy everyday with this special gift.

  4. Molly, you and your writing are such a gift. Thank you for opening your home, your heart, and your faith for all to share and delight in. You are such a blessing and inspiration to many of us. May God continue to smile down on your family.

  5. What a wonderful post! It definitely brought tears to my eyes and reminded me of the power of God’s love and His faithfulness. What a blessing your family has received! I’m not sure how I stumbled across your blog (homeschool resource searching I think?) but I am thoroughly pleased that I did! As a fellow Marylander, I can relate to so many of your stories. Your family sounds beautiful and it just reinforces my desire to homeschool my own two young children. Thank you!

  6. I am sure it’s not just pregnancy hormones, but this made me cry for you in the loss of your friend and for Emma and for Ariel. I really do believe that all things work together for good, when we trust in our Father.

  7. tears here. God has blessed your family and Emma’s passion. I can so relate to this, as my Joan has the same deeply-rooted love and need for a dog, which presents some challenges for our family right now. I tell her the same; pray, trust, in time …

  8. Awesome!! As a grown up who had to let go of her dreams of ever owning her own horse, this brings sheer joy to my heart for your daughter.

  9. what a beautiful story, molly. your relationship with your friend, the joy of giving and acceptance, watching your daughter come to the realization that ariel’s journey is now with you, and the depth of all that brought her to your family. xoxo

  10. I love this story. I love the answer you gave your daughter. I love this story SO MUCH as a woman who was horse-crazy as a little girl, who lived in town and still begged for a horse. . .who still thinks wistfully of owning a horse. Thank you for sharing this.

  11. goosebumps. everywhere.

    congratulations to miss emma, for her patience, perseverance and prayers. and to her parents, for their faith and gumption. your miss sarah would, i’ve no doubt, be beyond proud.

  12. And what a gift to your friend to know that her pony would be in such good hands. Wonderful story, and wonderful lesson for your little girl (and the rest of us!).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *