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Hey herd! It's Payton (@aguythatrides on instagram). I’ve been part of the Herd for almost a year now. I’m an 19 year old male equestrian from Illinois. Outside of riding I weld and do metalwork, but I have another less than common passion for 19 year old guys, I love coloring, doodling and just filling my life with color. I used to be really self conscious about doodling and coloring, but have learned to be proud of who I am, and my colorful stripes, here’s my story.
When I was younger I was your average kid doodling a little, coloring once in a while, but nothing much until I reached 7th grade. Something changed in me, and I realized that life was too bland to not be using the whole box of crayons. Once I realized that I wanted to make my life more colorful, it was game on to doodle and color.
But being a boy in middle school, I was very self conscious of my love of color. Guys didn't color or be artsy or doodle on stuff. So I was very secretive about it. I would only color stuff I could hide and be selective on what people saw. Maybe I’d paint on the cover of my notebook or a folder. Something that not a lot of people saw. It wasn't until high school that I had a bunch of really supportive friends who showed me that it was cool to show the world who you really are.
They were right. I started to show my colorful side more. My friends and I doodled on my backpack and I used it during school. I stopped hiding the drawings that I did in fear of being made fun of, and everyone accepted me for who I was. Living life with bright and fun colors is so much fun. Being an equestrian really adds to it, I can express myself easily with tack in fun colors, and it is accepted.
Being part of the Herd really allows me to show my stripes (or rainbows I color). Being able to show your stripes and true colors, and being accepted for that is really fun, and so important. Herd of Zebras teaches us to love and embrace our stripes, while adding a bright splash of color to our lives.
You can follow me on instagram at @aguythatrides