Bear with me: I know this is kind of a weird question. I also know that it’s weird that it’s been on my mind.
I give Tristan at least one kiss every time I see him. Frankly, I usually give him a lot more than that. I press my whole face into the soft side of his nose. I squish my nose right onto his nose and inhale deeply. I tuck my forehead into the groove right behind his ear. I rest my cheek on top of his head, between his ears, when he presses his head into my body. I do these things almost constantly – before rides, after rides, in the stall, in the crossties, in the field. And most times I do any of those things, I end it with a kiss.
When I leave the barn, I do two things. I double-check the door latch, and I give Tristan a kiss and I tell him I love him with all my heart. Sometimes I get more effusive than that, but I never, ever, ever fail to give him a kiss and tell him I love him. I’ve almost always done that. For the decade and a half of our partnership. As soon as he could bear someone touching his face (which took a while), I was kissing him. If I don’t also tell him I love him when I leave I feel like something’s left undone behind me. What if something happens? I want to always, always affirm how much I adore him, and to know that if that’s the last thing I told him, then he knows.
Maybe it’s sappy and weird? Maybe I’m vastly more tactile than the average horse person, or the average person in general? Maybe it’s just a weird habit that I’ve developed over years of being weird about my horse? Maybe it’s a family trait – I do have a very physically demonstrative family? (Possible additional evidence: my dog gets a LOT of kisses as well.)
Here’s the thing I only recently realized, though.
No one else at my barn seems to kiss their horse? I mean. I am sure it happens sometimes. But in the last few weeks since I started to realize this, I’ve been paying closer attention and…I don’t see it?
So I come here, to the internet, where I confess my weirdnesses for the whole world to see. Is it unusual? Do you kiss your horse? Do you do it a lot or only sometimes?