I love reading other horse blogs, from fellow equestrians around the world. Their photos, stories, accounts, horse shows, journeys- it calls out to me in a huge way. I enjoy their experiences and how they can relate to mine.
One aspect of my journey that some of my fellow riders- and maybe blog writers- can identify with is the ‘owning the problem horse.’ I make it very clear that when I bought Oats, things were NOT copacetic. At all. He was a tough nut, and I had a very hard time with him for quite awhile. Things would go well, and then he’d buck me off. Or I’d get dumped at a show. Hell, I am still getting dumped at shows…But that’s a me problem now, not really a horse problem.
Where I am very reluctant is when people see me, with Oats now. He’s great! Lovey, fun to show, fun to ride, loves jumping (for the most part) and is cooperative in my dressage lessons. I can loan him to my friend to mess around on when her horse is being a dink. What’s not to like?
Well, it took a ton to get there. Like, years of crying, blood, sweat, tears, angst, money. It did not come easy, even if it looks very easy now. So, when people with problem horses look at us and say- hey, if you can do it with Oats, so can I! I am anxious for them. I wouldn’t really encourage people to take on the same journey I went through–it was rough!
Please don’t always look to us as the eventual success story. Sometimes it is better for you to not take this step in the journey. There is no guarantee!
I also find this in horse blogs- some I read, the partnership is obviously not right. It’s a struggle, they justify every miserable thing their horse does, but in their heart of hearts, they know that something is VERY wrong. They just can’t get to the next step of admitting it.
When you can’t get to the barn, hop on and have a fun ride, reliably, your horse is NOT good for you. I have a job already and I work very hard at it. I do not want my horse to be my next job.
I do work very hard with Oats, but that’s because I LOVE it. I love our partnership, I enjoy trying new things with him, and learning about our relationship. I don’t do it because I have to, or because I have no choice. It was extremely difficult for a long time, but now when people see him go, and think he’s like, 30 year old schoolmaster who is rock-solid? I’m the proudest girl in the ring!
Don’t justify a bad relationship with hopes it ‘could’ eventually get better. Sometimes it will, sometimes it won’t.