You entered innocently into the role of a devoted Horse Husband. When you began dating your equestrian partner, you had no idea what the position you were applying for entailed.
At first, the job requirements were simple.
Your significant other suggested that you "spend time together" at her horse show, and meet "the other man" in her life. You interpreted this as a step in the right direction, your future wife was sharing with you the things that are important to her and you were naively along for the ride. You clapped, you took photos, and you smiled as a you observed a sport that you understood almost nothing about.
It was all in good fun.
Unknowingly, you had just completed your first working interview. Horse Husbands are cream of the crop, and such a selection isn't decided without a panel. Barn friends deliberated about the new guy and threw out opinions, but the one whose thoughts carried the most weight gave the yay, or perhaps the neigh.
Yes, chances are the horse's reaction to your introduction was a very real factor in the future of your relationship. Nothing fools simple animal intuition. The equine authority assessed you on a specific set of criteria that would determine if you would pass or fail as a Horse Husband. Were you a likeable human? Were you comfortable feeding carrots or too selfishly concerned about your fingers? If so, you need not apply.
The expectations for a horse spouse grew over time, though almost imperceptibly. Can you pick up a five pound bag of carrots at the grocery store? Please hold the aforementioned decisive horse while your equestrian love grabs something from the car. Look enthused as you try to care for the well being of a 1500 pound animal. Least of all, don't react as you've been handed the leash to a loin. The horse is more scared of you than you are of it. NOT.
Over time you became more comfortable in your new role, enough so that you could carry on basic equestrian conversations and no longer wondered why Horse Wife was proud of scoring 68%, (a result that earned you a second semester of calculus in college). You also learned that a blue ribbon didn't always mean doing well, it just meant there was no one else in the class.
When the words "the vet" started to trigger instant heartburn, you knew you had reached the pinnacle of your commitment. To an equestrian there is no higher devotion than an financial one, and for that - God Bless You. It was around this time that you learned to stop asking - HOW MUCH??? Instead, you got your own account at Dover because Christmas and Valentine's Day weren't celebrations if there wasn't the beige and green bag. What was true love if not receiving his and her Dover Saddlery catalogs in the mail?
Now, when the lovely Horse Wife comes home smelling of the barn and kisses you with the same mouth that graced the muzzle of an equine known for using his water bucket as a toilet, you don't question it. This is the life you chose, or maybe it chose you. Regardless, you're clearly an expert Horse Husband and it has not gone unnoticed. Your spouse realizes how lucky she is, and hopefully the horse does too. The judge's verdict is in - you make an excellent pair. Dare we call you a stud, Horse Husband. Here's to you, and all that you do. By all accounts (equine included), you are worth your weight in carrots.