Everyone has times when they need to start again. Horse riders typically face starting again even more often than most athletes, because of course the horse can get injured, just as easily as the rider can.
I started again, again, three weeks ago, and while it’s been up and down, this week I feel like I’m getting somewhere, finally.
Horse riders, I read today, are typically perfectionists, who put pressure on themselves, and are bad drivers, with messy cars. Well, I don’t know about the last two because my car is spotless 😉 but the first ones I can relate too. Whatever I decide to do, I always want to be the best at it, or at least the best I can be.
I get frustrated that I am not where I want to be, I want to be there now, I want to be stronger, better, not for anyone else, but for myself, and for my horse.
When I’m not able to ride how I want to ride, because of course that takes time and patience, I get frustrated. Frustration is great as long as you don’t take it out on the horse.
They say a poor workman blames his tools, well a bad horse rider blames the horse…
Last week the pet pig from the horse stable (yes pig) ran across the arena, and of course we did a nice leap sideways, but I stopped the spin. I told the pig that If I see him again he will be bacon…he squealed and ran off and I haven’t seen him since, so message received!!
Truth is it threw me a bit, and mum who is a big fan of the tough love approach, said if you want to complain about it, don’t do it, and if you do do it, don’t complain about it.
You have to learn sometimes to just suck it up, and decide what you want. No-one said it would be easy, and it’s up to you to decide whether or not it’s worth it.
For me it is. The bad rides are far outweighed by the good. The relationship I have with my horse, beats the times that I am afraid he might hurt me. If there ever comes a time when the bad outweighs the good, I will have to question whether I need to start again, again again, in a different direction.
It helps to have people who know you, who knew you when horses were the thing you did because you just loved it. Susanne lived with my family when I was little, and we used to ride out together on my farm…She visited me this weekend, and having known me for 20 years, it was good to be reminded that I don’t need to put pressure on myself, because at the heart of it all, is just a girl who loves horses.
I rode today, with the knowledge that it won’t always be easy. Starting again is like starting from scratch. Today though I did my first steps of good piaffe, and it feels like a victory. You have to learn to take each small step, as something to be happy about, so you can enjoy the journey, as much as the desire to get where you want to be.