Nancy W.

October 1, 2008
By Cristina Tolosa, Lake Oswego, OR

“Come here you little pig”! Nancy yelled.
I slowly trotted Stewy over to Nancy, my cheeks were flushed red and I had tears running down my face I was sniffling lightly.

“ Can’t do it Nancy he is just being to bad tonight.”

Nancy grabbed Stuart by the reins and gave him a big jerk, Stuart slowly backed up and tried to pull away but her grip was to strong.

“ You can do it Cristina, all you need to do is take hold off some rein and steer Mr. Piggy towards the jump. Now wipe your tears and get err’ done”!

She gave me a giant boost of confidence and I was ready to try it again. I headed round the left corner of the arena and spurred Stuart as hard as I could he kicked out a little but kept going. We were coming up to the first jump of the line I sat back and gave Stuart a nice tap on his butt; we sailed over the first jump landing perfectly. I smiled and rode o the next jump. In the background I could hear Nancy yell.

“ Leg, leg push him to the jump”!

I wasn’t really focusing I was just happy I had made it over the first jump, Stuart realized I wasn’t paying attention and he took advantage of the moment, Stuart went to a dead stop and I flew over his head. And landed on my back.

“ Ouuwwwwww I screamed at the top of my lungs and began to cry.

Nancy walked over to me and said
“I told you to add leg.”

I met Nancy about 4 years ago, my old horseback riding trainer had left the Lake Oswego Hunt Club, at the time my family couldn’t afford to move to a new barn. For a little I rode on my own but being a nine year old with barley any training about horses and with a grumpy pony, I was in desperate need of a trainer.
One day I was walking through the barn and realized there were tow new horses, an appaloosa and a black one, a middle aged little round lady was taking the black one out and a blonde teenage was taking out the appaloosa. I asked them were they were from and they said they had just moved here from Grants Pass. I asked if they new anyone who taught lessons the lady smiled at me and 15 minutes later I was in my first lesson. I thing let to another and then I started riding with the little lady once at week, then twice a week and then three times a week. The lady’s name was Nancy she was about 56 years old and had blonde hair she was short and plump and always smiled. 3 months after Nancy and her daughter Katherine had moved to Lake Oswego, Nancy already had a mini program running at the Hunt Club. She taught me, Janine, Martha, Field, Jenna, Claire and Juliana. We all trained with her for about 2 and a half years it was the beginning of summer and Nancy had been feeling really sick, she had to skip lessons a lot and was going to the hospital a lot. 2 weeks later I found out that Nancy had been diagnosed with breast cancer. It devastated my friends and me, we all we so unprepared for this. Nancy had, had cancer when she was younger but they were able to stop it. For the next few weeks Nancy stopped teaching me, in mid July she came back she had shaved her head and was on Kemo. Janine had a show that weekend Nancy was going to take her to it. I remember Nancy heart was getting weaker, slowly and she huffed and puffed as she walked it made me so sad to see her like this. I wanted to help her so much but what could I do, I gripped her hand I as tight as I could and tried to comfort her as much as I could.
One year passed Nancy fought the cancer as much as she could and she always kept going she never gave up, she never stopped trying to fight the terrible disease.
September 9, 2008 Cancer took Nancy's life; she will always be in my heart and in my mind. I hope this essay will raise your awareness about cancer and you will walk to stop cancer this fall. Last year 587,000 people in the U.S died of cancer, we all have to make an effort if we want to stop this terrible disease.

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