Letting Go

Parenting sucks.

This theory doesn’t come from personal experience with children. ( my wife and I don’t have any, but would like to have some one day ) However, Joe taught me what I can only imagine is an infinitesimal amount of knowledge in regards to parenting over the last several days.

Joe is a calf roping horse and he’s the full brother of Quail Bar Quincy, aka Roany. Roany was the horse we won Reserve World Champion on in 2007. ’06 or ’07, I can’t remember, but the point is that I had a certain expectation of Joe before he made it into my barn. And he surpassed them… by far.

Joe was a big-timer. When he arrived, he was already really stopping hard, but he would lose confidence when I left him. He would almost shy away from me as I went by. He worked rope almost in fear. He wasn’t sure if he was supposed to keep pulling, stop pulling, put slack in the rope, or what. He just knew he needed to be doing something.

That’s why I liked Joe. He was always thinking. He was a very smart animal. I refer to him in the past tense because he left us Friday – I’ll get to that in a minute.

I could show that horse something one time and that was it. He had know idea how talented he was. So, I started hauling him to the rodeos and calf ropings to get him seasoned. He worked nervous at the first two. Refugio and George West. Then he settled down and let me win second at a USCRA in Giddings. After that it was smooth sailing. All the people didn’t bother him much anymore, although he still had one eye on them at all times.

Well, Cody Harris came and stayed with us a while to try Joe last week. Cody rode a different horse we sold him while qualifying for the National High School Finals. Those of you familiar with the horses at the ranch will recognize ‘BH’ in the picture. Cody called him ‘Snort’. Now Cody is leading the calf roping standings in the PCA and he’s looking for a horse that’s at a different level. He’s a rising star in the calf roping world and a good kid. Well, he’s 20 years old so he’s on his way out from being a kid I guess.

Joe was a completely different horse under him and I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it. Things were just not right. There are plenty of horses to work here and so we pen roped a little the second day and Cody roped some breakaway on Joe. That’s when they started to click. Day three found me watching Cody hold a couple up and spit ’em out even though Joe was hitting the dirt and coming out of it fast and pulling hard. Cody was just a grinnin…

This guy can rope.

And then I realized it for the first time. This calf roping horse was leaving. Cody hadn’t told me yet, but I already knew. It made me kind of nervous. Almost sick at my stomach. Day one was not good. And I certainly didn’t want them to get all the way back to Alabama and start having trouble.

Joe just has to learn Cody the same as Cody has to learn Joe. The thing is, I’d like to give him a call everyday and let him know… “Well, if he’s doing such and such , do this – and if he’s doing something else, well try this….”

Joe has the talent. And he knows the routine.

Cody has the talent. And Cody knows the routine.

James just needs to shut up. 😉 This horse is headed down the road to bigger and better things.

Ecclesiastes 3 says there’s a time for everything. Well I guess it’s time to turn him lose, trust what I’ve done with Joe and trust in his ability to be a big-timer calf roping horse. Hopefully it won’t be long and the pictures and success stories will come rolling in.

I hope…


2 thoughts on “Letting Go

  1. I’m sitting here with tears rolling down my cheeks. This is exactly what parenting is, and reading your words just made me remember the girls leaving home.

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