Equine Therapy and The Visitor
Updated: Feb 10
by Julie Cosgrove
The first book in The Visitor Mysteries releases tomorrow, and today, Julie B. Cosgrove tells us the why behind her reason to join in on this worthwhile project. Take it away, Julie.
A sub theme of all The Visitor books is fundraising for nonprofit charities that help children. So why did I decide to write about Equine Therapy? About twelve years ago, as a freelance reporter, I was assigned to write an article on one of these programs in North Texas. Honestly, I was skeptical. How could physically and mentally challenged children benefit from riding horses?
Witnessing the smiles on small faces sitting high on a gentle steed melted my doubting heart. I saw shy, low-esteemed postures straighten. I saw twinkles appear in eyes. I heard laughter and excitement in high pitched voices.
That day I learned about the mental and physical benefits of horseback riding and grooming. In the Wright Foundation’s Connie Wright’s own words:
“Equine therapy is not new, and this is a good thing because time has allowed extensive studies to confirm the amazing benefits this treatment has on the physically and mentally challenged. For amputees, straddling a horse helps improve their posture as well as tone their buttock, back and thigh muscles. Children with incapacitating injuries or physical challenges like spina bifida, muscular dystrophy, and skeletal birth defects show vast improvement in coordination, flexibility, and balance. The rhythmic movement of the horse is key in this process. The movement also brings a calmness to children with autism, Asperger’s, attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity disorders.”
That day became etched in my mind and stored in the corners of my heart. So, when Write Integrity Press called for mystery authors to write one of the Visitor stories, I raised my hand wildly. I capsulized this wonderful worthwhile therapy inside a mystery reminiscent of the Dame Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express. All the main characters have a reason to poison one of the attendees. But no, they didn’t all spike his chamomile tea. Only one did. Follow Izzy and Connie as they try to help the sheriff figure out whodunnit.
I always want my readers to learn something new as well as be entertained. I hope you will experience both when you read The Visitor Makes a Retreat.
More About the Author:
Whodunnit? My mom used to ask us that with a hand cocked on her hip, peering into our wide-eyed faces. Naturally the blame trickled down to the youngest one—me. I had to solve the crime so I could plead my innocence.
On walks through the Texas Hill Country with my dad, I became a keen observer of nature, and later in life as an adult and writer, of human nature. So sleuthing is part of my DNA.
I wrote award-winning works in high school creative writing class, but then life edged in. Even so, on my long commutes I’d make up storylines in my head. After my husband passed away, the desire to write returned. My sister suggested I write mysteries, which had long been my favorite genre.
Now I absorb mysteries whenever I get the chance then let the whodunnits capture my imagination, and my keyboard. I think I’m finally becoming who God intend me to be.
Besides writing mystery, suspense-romance, and short stories, I am a freelance editor. For the past ten years, I have written regularly for several devotional publications .My own blog, Where Did You Find God Today, has readers in over 50 countries. Visit my website at www.juliebcosgrove.com
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