Before I start the “real” post…
Yesterday was my very tolerant and forgiving horse’s 13th birthday! I spent half of the year thinking he was turning 14, then I realized…oh hey, nope. Red turned 13 yesterday and we celebrated with carrots and birthday hats. We put the hat on Stormie as well since her birthday was a few days ago (She also turned 13) but she was spooked by it for the first few minutes and just irritated the other half, so no good photos lol. Red, however, hammed it up and didn’t mind it. I posted a sappy post on Facebook and Instagram, but y’all hear about how great he is all the time (and sometimes how bad he is,rofl.) so I’ll just say that I’m ridiculously blessed to have him and I hope that we get to celebrate every birthday together, preferably for about 20+ more years 😉
May 30th was apparently a good day, because 5(?) horses at our old barn Ivy Hills were also celebrating birthdays. They threw a little party so we went by, ate some good food and talked to old friends. I ended up getting talked into hopping on Patches, an Appaloosa that I’ve ridden a few times before we moved the horses home, and went on a trail ride with some of the old riding gang + some new boarders. 🙂
Patches was wonderful as she always is, and I realized how much more confidence I seemed to have on her. I realized that I’m so used to Red and his quirks and bad habits that I’ve started to expect him to do wrong, and while I’m slowly getting more comfortable after my, uh…unplanned dismount awhile back, I’ve definitely lost some confidence. Our arena has been really good for us, but I think it’s time for me to cowgirl up and just let go of my fears and step outside of my comfort zone. Red is a good horse and I had the same chance of getting bucked off of Patches as I did with him – both are good horses, but I don’t know Patches as well and I think that helped me somehow. I didn’t know if I should expect her to be bad, so I just didn’t. I rode her like she was going to be perfect and didn’t give her a chance to be bad, I rode well and was fine..and it hit me that I just need to ride Red like he’s going to be great, and have a “I’m going to kick butt” mindset. I was nervous getting on her but we got going and I was good.
We went to the old fruit and berry patch and it was so weird to be riding back there again, super bittersweet. I miss that place. We did w/t/c and Patches was way, way rougher than I remembered. Red and her used to have the same type of ride, and it threw me off a bit when she got going. Red’s definitely changed as far as his roughness goes.
My stirrups were too short but they were stuck in place and no one could fix them, so I rode without them for the majority of the ride. My whole body is aching today and after sitting in agony in the church pew I gave in and took Ibuprofen, rofl. My knees didn’t care for the short stirrups very much, and my butt wasn’t super happy with me not posting. 😉 It was a really good ride.
When we came back around to the barn Patches was being barn sour but I got her going again and she stopped her head slinging, mom looked at me when I got off and said, “Okay, now ride your own horse like you ride her. You would’ve gotten nervous if that was Red.” I told her I was slightly nervous when she started acting up, and she just laughed and said, “You can take control of a big Appaloosa mare, you can control your own horse. All you have to do is ask him to be good and he’s going to listen. Ride like you know how all the time because I know you do.” I needed the pep talk and needed to realize that I can ride issues out. Now I’ve just gotta get back on my big guy after this storm and ride like I know how. 😉
So, if any of y’all have tips or words of wisdom for a ridiculously nervous rider that has zero reason to be nervous…feel free to throw them at me. 😉
Tomorrow I’ll post some of the other photos I got at the barn. 🙂 The farm owner (J) requested that I take a ton of photos…so I took 500, lol.