Today’s fun fact: I briefly considered majoring in Equine Studies in college. I actually visited the University of Findlay with that goal in mind. While the campus was beautiful and the barns were gorgeous, I ultimately decided to keep horses as a hobby, instead of making them my career. Looking back, there are a million reasons I’m glad I made this choice, the least of which is that I’m simply not good enough to be a professional. But nevertheless, that choice became a defining moment in my equestrian journey.
Way back when, I chose to have fun with horses and not make them my work; I chose make going to the barn optional, not a chore, and I never forget that. I work a desk job and a lot of days, I’m really excited to put on my breeches and head to the barn. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy my work, but I also love getting to leave at the end of the day and enjoy what I love. But you know what really sucks? When all of a sudden your escape becomes another office.
Right now, riding Miles isn’t fun: it’s frustrating, it’s difficult, and it tests me physically, mentally and emotionally. I work all day and the last thing I really want to do is leave my home office and drive 20 minutes to another office and do a few more hours of work. And right now, that’s what the barn and riding Miles feels like: another job, more hard work. This is the part of horseback I dislike the most.
But I keep going anyways, and every day I keep working hard. I tell myself it’s going to be worth it, because on the other side of all this shit I’m slogging through is my dream, my goal. Progress is slow, agonizingly slow, but there is progress. It took me 30 minutes yesterday to get Miles to extend the canter when I asked without histronics, but he did it. Progress.
While there’s a lot to be sour about in terms of riding right now, I’m also trying to remember the good things I have going for me. I’m not missing any rides or any lessons, thanks to Moiya. In fact, I’m riding and learning more than ever. Plus, I have the best team of support that any adult amateur could ask for: vets, farrier, Trainer and BFF/working student are all working really hard to help me — and for that, I’m eternally grateful. So even though Miles and I aren’t having a ton of fun right now, I’m confident that in a few months we will be going better than ever. All I have to do is hang in there and keep working.