ASHA Thank You Letter to My Saddlebred: CH Harlem's Sweet Success
Published Date: Nov 16, 2020
To my heart horse- CH Harlem’s Sweet Success, “Danny”,
Each and every day, I am filled with gratitude to have such an incredible soul like yours in my life. I truly cannot thank you enough for being the most perfect American Saddlebred I could have ever dreamed of. Thank you for letting me love you beyond words and loving me unconditionally in return. Hearing your whinny each morning and night is something I will never take for granted, as you are my once in a lifetime heart horse. It is my greatest pleasure in life being your human. You make my heart burst with love and pride. Thank you for being by my side through middle school, high school, and now, as I finish my senior year of college. You have given me confidence, determination, and compassion that I never knew was possible. I owe everything to you, as you have been my rock through it all. Since the very first day I met you, something just felt right. While some people think I am crazy for saying this, I truly think we were made for each other in this universe. I have been your biggest fan since day one and I still am to this day, every day. Anyone that knows me will attest to how obsessed I am with you and the mutual feelings you express in return.
I thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me the incredible relationships I have in my life. Because of you, I have a valued relationship with my mother. You have given us so much time together and something so strong to bond over. The precious time you have given me with my mother, working to present you to the best of our abilities, has been the blessing of a lifetime. Because of you, we have such a close, strong relationship. While I did not think it was possible to love my mother any more than I do, you brought my love and appreciation for her to a whole new level. You have also given me some of the most incredible best friends at horse shows. You have introduced me to competitors who are now close friends. You have practically given me a second family at horse shows.
Looking back through the 8 years we have been together, I thank you for making every #asbdream I could have imagined come true. Thank you for carrying me with grace and care through my academy walk and trot days. While we never won a single blue ribbon in academy, you gave me the confidence I lacked. You showed me what it is like to trust my equine partner and to do it with love. As you stepped up to also be my world class show horse, you never lost your pure intentions of carrying me with love and grace. You checked off every wildest dream of mine. It is still so surreal to look back at all of our accomplishments. Thank you will never be enough for carrying me with the same grace and care in your victory pass at the World’s Championship Horse Show. I truly do not know a horse that deserves all the success you have achieved in your career. It has been such an honor to be your partner in the ring and I am humbled by your presence.
As you have made so much history for the American Saddlebred Hunter Division, the thing I love most about you is your ability to also compete in the therapeutic riding classes. Seeing you bond with the children in Riding for the Handicap of Western Pennsylvania makes my heart burst with pride. Therapeutic riding for children with disabilities is something my heart is so passionate about. To have my own horse that thrives in this equine department is truly more than I could ever ask for or dreamed of.
How patient and kind you are with your riders is incredible. Your ability to go from all show horse to a safe, reliable mount for children with disabilities truly speaks to your professionalism as an equine partner. Your heart truly is second to none. I thank you again and again for having such a pure disposition that allows me to share you with so many different children. It fills my heart to see the joy you bring to so many faces. You truly are my most prized unicorn.
Tears run down my face while writing this as thank you will never be enough for all you have done for me. I hope you know that I will always love you more than anything in this world. You are perfect in every way possible, Danny. You are everything I have dreamed of and more. Thank you for being my very first and most incredible American Saddlebred. You are my forever World Champion. I will always be your biggest fan. I love you.
Your human Caitlin
Caitlin Brannon and CH Harlem’s Sweet Success are from the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area and have enjoyed many years as an AOT team competing across the country in the American Saddlebred Hunter Country Pleasure division, and were the first team to ever be named World's Champion of Champions in the division in 2019. C
This month ASHA will be featuring a series of special Thank You letters between some of our favorite Saddlebred combos across disciplines and levels of competitions! Regardless of how you are involved with the Saddlebred, they make us feel whole, fuel our fire, and teach us invaluable lessons about life and ourselves. This series is a way to share not only the love we have for our American Saddlebreds but spotlight all the areas of our life that we are grateful to have our four legged best friends awaiting us in the barn. Learn more about this special feature and contest today!