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As Little A Chance There Is


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#1 Zoe

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 09:00 PM

This is the letter I'm sending to AHA for the Youth of the Year award.



I have loved horses since the day that I knew they existed. When I was 4 years old, I went to my very first horse camp, and from then until I was 8 years old, I rode every horse that I could get my fingers on, from trail rides to horse camps to lessons every other weekend. I then began my endeavor with Arabians, and have been head-over-heels for them since. I rode with Hunters with an Arabian instructor on the weekends from the time that I was 8 until I was 12, and fell in love with a little grey Arabian mare named Cameo. From there, my heart was on fire. When I was 13, I started riding cutting and barrel horses in exchange for excruciating days in the sun of work, just to get my fix, when I was no longer able to take lessons. When I was 14, I went on hiatus from horses for about 6 months. At last, I moved out of my mom’s and in to my dad’s, and he so graciously moved on to a horse farm. From there, he helped me buy a small cremello Quarter Horse mare. I adored her personality, but forever dreamed of having my “perfect” Arabian. I trained her from the ground up to a green walk/trot/canter horse, and only a few months after I sold her, she became the youngest certified therapeutic riding horse at St. Andrew’s college. After I sold her, I bought with my own money a purebred Arabian mare, but she still was not everything that I was looking for in a horse. Our personalities did not mesh, so after a year of trying to make it work with her, I resorted to putting her up for sale. Very soon after, her breeder proposed an offer, and I took it. Only two weeks after she went back “home,” I was utterly blessed by an offer that I could not refuse. This offer lead to my current gelding, SK Hot Shot, aka Tosh, whom I will keep until he becomes my very own guardian angel. Keep in mind, this entire time, I’ve been on my own. I have had a total of 4 horse lessons in the last 6 years. I love Tosh with my entire heart, and could not imagine what life would be like had he not trotted in to my life. After only having him home for a month, I took him to the NC State Fair Horse Show in October of 2011 and showed him at NCAHA’s division of it, in HA/AA Hunter Pleasure ATR, taking home a Champion ribbon. In April of 2012, I brought Tosh, after months of hard work, to NCAHA/ODAHA’s Region 12/Region 15 joint qualifier, and came home with 9 ribbons out of 10 possible, 3 of them beings firsts. I placed in HA/AA Hunter Pleasure JTR, ATR, and AOTS, coming first in AOTS, bringing me tears of joy. My dream is really coming true with Tosh, and to have a partner like him… It is unthinkable.
Let me share the back story. I grew up in a very unstable household. My mom is severely mentally ill, and I essentially grew up on the government. Horses were my therapy on the weekends that I got to go see my dad. Without them, I’m honestly not sure where I’d be. I remember I would pray for it to be over, and I would cry myself to sleep every night. To escape it, I waded through horse magazines, soaking up every piece of information. I would go through tack catalogues and circle everything that I would buy for my one-day horse. I would read over and over how to train a horse, how to ask a horse to do this, how to teach them not to do that. I read language that I didn’t fully understand, but when the opportunity arrived, it became natural.

In the summer of 2011, I acquired a job as a full time nanny and saved every penny, along with learning priceless things from these adorable girls! After that, I paid to bring Tosh home to NC, all the way from Little Rock, AK. I bought every piece of tack, every bit of wormer, and ever dollop of Face Glow to make it all become real. I have continued to work Monday through Friday after school until 5pm as a part time nanny for the same girls. I worked from August 2011 to February 2012 at a restaurant/pub, but that job not being stable enough in pay, I got another job as a waitress working between four and six days a week, alongside my nannying. It’s hard; I will never say that it’s not, but everything being as it is, I have to. I have to have my horse. I have to have him here for me. I will work ‘til the ends of the Earth to ensure that I can continue to have him, love him, show him, and pester the heck out of him.

Truth be told, I’ve never won any awards, aside from Accelerated Reader and Student of the Month in elementary school. I failed the 6th grade due to absences. I’ve never gotten the best grades in school because of everything that goes on at home, but if anyone ever asks me if I’ll give up, the short answer is no. I’ll never stop. I’ll never stop wishing, praying, hoping. I’ll never stop loving, smiling, or giving. I’m not only here for myself, but for every little girl that’s ever had a wish. I’m here for any child that’s ever suffered and ever wished to get out. I’m here to show that with hope, anything is possible, and that giving up isn’t an option. I’m here to touch people’s lives with everything that they thought was never possible. I’ve only been on this earth for 18 years, and I have another 100 to make up for the ###### I went through when I was younger.

Long story short, Arabian horses have made me the person that I am today, and because of them, I will never give up, and neither will anyone that comes in touch with me. It is my goal to make a name for myself in the Arabian industry, be it through a training opportunity, or simply being myself and rising to the top on my wonderful gelding, with no trainer but myself.


I know I'm not the perfect candidate, but it's worth a shot, isn't it?

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"  Evil triumphs only when good men do nothing . . .  "

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#2 karens

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Posted 14 April 2012 - 09:09 PM

Awesome! Thanks for sharing your stories. I hope you win! Keep on letting the work with horses heal you.

#3 sport horses

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 12:44 AM

Chloe, good luck.
I won't address the should you or shouldn't you (that is your choice alone to make) nor the content, except for 2 items.
1. I encourage you to work on your paragraph deliniation.
2. I'm not sure but I am guessing you didn't ship your new boy from Alaska, although many are shipped back and forth from here.
Congratulations on getting your new horse and going forward.


p.s. I am dying to know what word was x'd out by the system here?
Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll smell forever... but be out from underfoot.

#4 Zoe

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 08:12 AM

Zoe, good luck.
I won't address the should you or shouldn't you (that is your choice alone to make) nor the content, except for 2 items.
1. I encourage you to work on your paragraph deliniation.
2. I'm not sure but I am guessing you didn't ship your new boy from Alaska, although many are shipped back and forth from here.
Congratulations on getting your new horse and going forward.


p.s. I am dying to know what word was x'd out by the system here?


haha "he ll" I'll revise it before I send it. 'Tis the rough draft. :)

...and he came from Arkansas. rofl

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"  Evil triumphs only when good men do nothing . . .  "

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#5 siiamese

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 10:16 AM

perhaps leave out the part about the mentally ill mother, how you escaped her home to live with dad - - if you could put a more positive spin on the entire tale it would go over better with people reading it maybe?

#6 JBD

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 02:02 PM

Well, I'll comment on the content because I'm assuming if you take the time to enter, you'd like to have a chance at winning Your accomplishment is doing it on your own. Highlight how hard you work but try not to make it sound like a resume. It's good to talk about how you've grown as a horsewoman but I don't see anything about using what you've learned for anyone but yourself. That's OK but if you've helped anyone else out along the journey, mention it.
I've read better things you've written. This one feels like you spilled out a lot of thoughts all at once. Keep the emotion but write for your audience

#7 splashh

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 04:19 PM

Zoe,

Your essay is a breath of fresh air from my point of view. It is sad for me to hear that you've endured the hard things in your past but you have so much to be proud of - things that a run-of-the-mill applicant will not fully understand for years to come, and maybe never. I truly hope that AHA realizes how lucky they are to have you as a candidate. The true mark of a person is how they act when they are down and out, not when everything goes fine. And the message is clear that when things are hard-you work harder for what you love, and you love Arabians. Without them maybe you would have struggled harder to find the strenth you needed during the tough times. Leave the essay for a day or two and then pick it up with fresh eyes and give it a new read for your spelling/grammar adjustments or get a friend proof read. Always helps me to improve a draft if I get away from it for a day or so. But for me-the message is spot on because it is your story and your life.

#8 Zoe

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 06:03 PM

Thanks y'all. I really appreciate the feedback. :)

Siiamese, I understand where you're coming from, though that is most of my struggle... If it's not something they'd like to hear, then I suppose I ought not be a candidate.

This one feels like you spilled out a lot of thoughts all at once. Keep the emotion but write for your audience


How do you mean?

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"  Evil triumphs only when good men do nothing . . .  "

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#9 JBD

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 12:02 PM

Zoe, what's the deadline to submit? I don't have any time early this week but am more than happy to take a deeper dive.


#10 chalice

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 04:31 PM

I thought it was well written. I don't know what types of things the judges look for in determining Youth of the Year, but I thought you did an excellent job of describing what Arabian horses have done for you. And yes, I did notice the state abbreviation. AR is the abbreviation for Arkansas; AK is the abbreviation for Alaska.