The Life of Lauren-Lenten Writing #10

I believe God gives us what we need, not necessarily what we want or what we pray for each day.  It has taken a long time to understand that.  Twenty-four years ago in Melbourne, Florida, I gave birth to Lauren Kelly Davis.  She was in many ways a wonder baby.

I had serious difficulties carrying pregnancies. Amber, my first successful pregnancy, was born in 1982.  By 1992, I had two children but had seven pregnancies.  I had surgeries and treatments but another baby was out of the question it seemed.  I took a new, high pressure job at a hospital in Florida and moved across the country.  A few months into the new job, I just wasn’t feeling well and found out-surprise-that I was four months pregnant.  With some serious medical intervention I delivered a three week premature baby that was alive and kicking and has never stopped since!

Florida baby Lauren loved the water, the pool, the ocean.

This photo was taken at a topless beach in St Bart’s –like a native


From that moment on, Lauren was on the go.  She loved animals and the water.  Lauren was dragged to her sister Amber’s softball games and her sister Ally’s riding lessons.  Lauren had no (zero) interest in baseball but tons of excitement around the horses.

Lauren’s focus face

Lauren like all of her sisters just had an innate ability to work with animals. Here she is with her Irish Wolfhound, her bearded collie and our shih tzu.


My Florida baby looked the part with her blonde hair

Christmas photos 1996 with sisters


 Lauren got on her first horse at age five and rarely looked away.  Lauren also pushed the envelope in terms of what type of riding she would do.               

First Christmas

The rest of us were content to ride English some but never had been big jumpers.  Lauren only wanted to ride English and has worked her way up through the rings in terms of height.

Lauren pushing to higher heights with Mick.

Abirthday card Lauren made for my 50th. Note the words across the top. It is a note from lauren saying happy birthday from all my horses at the time.

My three daughters on my 50th birthday

Happy birthday to my last child Lauren.  I was blessed to have you join me in this world.

Winning USEF Zone7 Finals with Feather.

Living the Life

wef

Lauren and Ky waiting for their next class with trainer Trapp. The 20 foot high hedge and swaying palms are gorgeous.


My daughter Lauren has had some opportunities throughout 2016 to ride up a level and ride some amazing horses.  As 2017 starts, she finds herself in Wellington, Florida at the most favored of all winter Hunter Jumper shows for the US.  Through some amazing acts of kindness, extreme budgeting and good fortune, Lauren will be in Wellington showing at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) for six weeks.


WEF has traditionally been the winter home to many of the sport’s top riders. Lauren has already spotted,  and gotten to observe in person, several of the world’s Olympic riders. I mean, really, winters in south Florida versus whatever spot north of there that you are from-WEF is the clear winner.  Looks pretty amazing. 

Interestingly, Lauren was born about 100 miles straight north of the show grounds. She is definitely a Florida girl. As a kid, she followed Ally and I to the Palm Beach Winter shows each year. 

Never in our wildest dreams would we have imagined Lauren coursing over the big jumps on an imported horse. Lauren was busy jumping anything and everything she could with her first horse Thunder. He was an almost 17 hand gelding-I know what five year old kid gets that as their first horse?

She even struck the imagination and interest of a news photographer who was covering a different story.  His attention diverted by the little blonde girl jumping the big horse. Anyway,  the heart of that little girl is quite evident is this determined young lady!  

Jumping much higher heights, Lauren and Ky soar through the air.


Standing at the in-gate last week, teen phenom rider Tori Colvin, inquired of Lauren if she knew the course and the distances for the next class. Indeed, she did!  Lauren was happy to share those with her new acquaintance. Wow, what a moment. 

Entering the big and beautiful Wellington ring for the first time was a little daunting I understand. But each trip has been a little better than the last, so progress is being made. 

Lauren and Ky getting their bearings in the ring.


Her ride for this trip to show jumping’s Magic Kingdom is a 15 year old imported German Hanoverian warmblood officially named Stanislaus but affectionately known as Ky. He is a super horse with incredible talent, a knowing demenoir, heart of gold. and a love of bananas (not kidding!).  Ky has literally shown from coast to coast in the US. A couple of palms trees, massive jumps and loud crowds effect him not in the least. 

WEF-to me the most beautiful venue

Looking like total pros.


Owned by friend, Caitlyn Epperson, he was a perfect guide for Lauren to get a taste of what it means to ride the “big leagues” of US show jumping.  


Caitlyn and Ky were division winners last year at WEF. What an honor! Lauren has some work to do to fill those big shoes.

I am hopeful that this is the start of increased opportunities to showcase what I believe is Lauren’s natural talent as a fourth generation equestrian. But I think she will (or has) already surpassed her noble ancestors. 

And if Ky is the best horse she will ever ride, that is okay as well.  He is superb!  

Still, I heard a learned clician stating that no matter how good a horse is, it will take a couple years on that  horse to truly develop the best parternship. Lauren and Ky are making enroads each day against the top competitors and best horses in the US. But they can still do better.

Look at this ring!! Look at them go!

Lauren bending Ky to the first jump.


Lauren is having the opportunity of a lifetime, living the life of a top equestrian. Thank you to Trapp and those that have deeply believed in her and supported this journey.  To Lauren I say, as I always have from her first show, God Speed little girl!!

Thank you for riding along.