horse-with-floral-wreathImage- Smitten Magazine (Jordan Thompson of Landon Jacob Photography)

My 2 year old daughter is obsessed with horses. Just this morning she got over-excited because she saw one yet again on T.V (we were watching Barbie: The Princess and the Pop Star for like the millionth time). When we took her to Agrofest earlier this year she had her chance to take a ride on one. I’ll never forget it.

When her dad put her on she immediately looked up and stared forward waiting for the horse to move like it was the most natural thing in the world for her to be up there.

I couldn’t believe my eyes.

She tends to have both a fear of and fascination with animals which of course injects a lot of unpredictability into what her responses will be on seeing them up close.

That evening there was definitely a lot more fear coming forth when we visited the booths of the relatively large animals like the cows and the sheep- so when her ride began and she sat there all composed and relaxed- I was so busy staring in awe at her that I forgot about the camera.

By the time she was a few meters off I caught myself and had to run after them to snap some photos. It was amazing. The only thing that upset her in the end was having to get off the horse, poor thing.

Because of her influence, I’ve been paying more attention to wedding photos with horses in them.

Bride-and-Horse-1 Bride-Walking-Horse Bride-on-Horse-with-Pink-FlowersImages- Bridal Musings (With Love and Embers Photography), Style Me Pretty (Jose Villa Photography), Wedding Chicks (KT Merry Photography)

Such powerful and oddly conflicting imagery- horses represent strength, freedom and independence – marriage to some represents the reining in of that freedom and autonomy.

So the idea of a bride trotting down the aisle on a steed at first seemed both poetic and slightly disturbing to me.

But…looking at these photos again, I’m starting to wonder now if the horse might actually represent the strength and self-sufficiency that the woman is confidently carrying into a marriage.

A strength and self-sufficiency that she knows will flourish because in the end marriage is really just trading one type of freedom for another kind- and in a true partnership you in fact need the qualities I mentioned in order for your marriage to develop and flourish.

Beach-Wedding-HorsesImages- Brides (Stephanie Pfriender Stylander Photography), Bali-Tours, Karla Casillas via Pinterest (Chris + Lynn Photographers)

The idea is growing on me…I mean it makes sense that a woman who has the bravery to steer a horse at full gallop down any path, trusting her instincts and leaping over every obstacle in sight- is exactly the type of woman that marriage is made for.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

By the way, if you’re considering  doing this for your wedding, do check out Ride Barbados – they have experience arranging these types of ceremonies.

Bajan Wed