Equine Time

I love horses! Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted a big barn filled with them. As I rode in the backseat of our car, on the tractor, or in the back of the truck, I would pretend I was galloping on a horse. I would imagine the wind blowing through my hair and jumping over logs. All I wanted was to experience real riding. At school, I heard all about weekend rodeos, shows, and trail rides from most of my classmates. {And let me tell you, that was difficult.}

Finally, when I was 15, almost 16, my chance came. I think the riding lesson was supposed to be a one time deal for my parents before a trip. (We were going to ride horses on the beach & my parents didn’t want me to back out.) However, I was instantly hooked. It was everything I imagined it to be. I spent years informally riding and working on weekends at a western barn. I learned a lot by trial and error, falling off and getting back on. It was all fun and partly filled my dream; but I still wanted to experience competing. I briefly tried competing in English walk/trot while in college. Unfortunately, being a full time student, working on campus, working at the barn, learning a new riding discipline (Western to English), and practicing for the shows; proved to be too much for me. I was faced with making a hard decision. I thought I was making the choice between competing and earning good grades. I ended up having to make the choice between horses and college. I chose college, but it hurt. The whole experience turned into a hurtful, back-stabbing fiasco, so much so, that I quit horses all together. I never fell out of love with horses; but it was very bittersweet for me.

My husband saw how much I missed horses as the years went by. I wasn’t the same happy person. In fact, I was dealing with a lot of depression. So, we bought a beautiful buckskin Tennessee Walker mare. I was no longer the confident rider though. I was rusty and needed instruction. Then, I had my daughter and we moved. {My mare lives with my best friend back home at the moment.}

Flash forward to the present, once a week, I have my equine time. It is the highlight of my week. I realized that I cannot shake my love for horses. After I ride, I am on a happiness high. {The actual ride can be disastrous, but the fact that I rode makes me happy.} Riding completes me! I began riding for English basic equitation months ago and was against competing. I am slowly building my confidence back. Now, I’m riding a different horses and learning to count strides going over poles. I am slowly being talked into competing. I am nervous to think about getting back into the show ring. Of course, it is a dream of mine too.

Horseback riding is also a great form of exercise! As if horses need another positive note.

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