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Crippling Concern

"The beautiful spring came; and when Nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also."
Harriet Ann Jacobs

It's been a while since I have blogged and the truth is, I have been really busy both physically, and mentally. Ironically, it's always the mental blur that inhabits my brain that makes me feel incapacitated the most.  While I am busy shaping up for our first horse show (which I run and typically try to ride in, too) on the Long Weekend in May, I have also been front row for the battle taking place in my brain for what seems like, indefinitely.  Both during the daylight hours and haunting my dreams as I sleep, it consumes me.  The fear and frustration is back.

Just 'cuz. And PS, we are getting our new puppy on Saturday! C will be thrilled.

Since the day I tumbled off Kidd some time ago, he has been different, and I imagine so have I.  At the risk of sounding like a voodoo-lady; like I shook one too many brain cells too loose, I think he blames me for putting him in that situation -- a situation which I knew would be out of his comfort zone.  I think he scared himself when he fell, and I think he blames me for all of it.  Truth be told, I don't blame him. I should have stood up for my horse and given him a proper ride instead of just hopping on in a hectic arena and hoped for the best.  As soon as I got on, I knew it was a bad choice and it was all down hill from there.  

Also Just 'Cuz.  Can't wait to get this lady in-foal to Parcival soon!!

Since our mishap, he has been incredibly tense and untrusting.  He has been more nervous on the ground and lunge line than usual, and I took a week off of riding to just lunge and do ground work, hoping it would help us rebuild what I broke.  Truth be told, I broke a little piece of myself in the process.  My newfound confidence had been shattered and spread across the frozen ground; lost.  Kidd spent the entire 'rebuilding' week being scared of the same things we have seen in this arena for 6 years; things that aren't normally scary more than once after a reassuring voice or pat from me.  All my reassurances in the world have become empty; wasted.  I had truly hoped by the end of this week we would be back to normal and I would be back on track to put some serious time in the saddle to prepare for the first horse show of the season at the end of April, but I was wrong.

One last "Just 'Cuz"..... Cause i'll likely be posting about these two later this year.

The following week I was supposed to ride, but I didn't (really).  Things still weren't right, and I ignored the fact that I am paying $20/day in board to not ride, but I truly feel like if I push past it and revert back to the drill-sergeant I know I am capable of, I would set us even further back.  I needed to let Kidd have fun, and I needed to inject myself into the situation whether he liked me or not. Even if it meant being scared of getting thrown, or hurt one way or another.  I wanted to sit on him, if nothing else just to prove myself wrong.

Wednesday was my birthday, and it seemed like as good a day as any to risk death.  It was beautiful outside, so I decided to lunge Kidd outside in the 2 feet of soft, powdery snow that has blanketed my life for far too long it seems.  He had an absolute blast, and spent nearly the entire time with his tail straight up in the air, reminding me of the lovely Passage he will one day have if we can ever get past this.  Once he began to tire and I had to do more chasing than it was worth, we retreated to his paddock where I decided to be brave, and get on him bareback in a halter.  It's a small paddock, but that worries me more.  To be honest, I would rather be on a horse in the middle of a field then have a fence within 30 feet of me in all directions, but it also seemed like a safer bet based on his excitement of being in the 150 x 300ft outdoor surrounded by new horses that were equally excited to have dinner and a show.  I lined Kidd up to the fence, and climbed on.  I could feel his back tense under me while he gave me a sideways eye that was chock-full of questioning concern, but I reassured him and we stood until he sighed and lowered his head.  While my time on his back was spent mostly sitting with some forward and backing cues, I enjoyed soaking up the sunshine on the back of my boy.  Together, we began to relax and I took that moment to dismount and lead him inside.  We both enjoyed ourselves, and the fact that I pushed past own self to ride bareback and in a halter, it was worth every penny I had previously felt was being wasted, to feel him genuinely happy, for what seemed like the first time in months.

Believe it or not, this was him being 'calm' lol.

From there, I made the decision to confirm that I will be taking Kidd home to my farm on March 17th.  We both dislike boarding at the indoor, and while it started off well, things quickly went down hill. His excitement to be outside really rang home for me, and I knew then that we won't make much more progress in this place.  While we are still blanketed in the beautiful, but blasted, snow, it has been cold at night but the sun is packing enough heat that it melts throughout the day.  March has certainly been "in like a lion" and I woke up to -26C again this morning, but by mid week it's supposed to be warmed up and spring will be here in no time at all.

I'm learning to live with the crippling fear that at some point, crept it's way into my life like a cool breeze; unseemingly cause for concern at the time.  More than the fear, the frustration with myself that is a result of allowing the fear to consume me, has lead me to some dark places as of late.  I know I will get through this in my own time, and I think getting Kidd home where we are both happier, is going to help our failing marriage.


  1. i hope the move home and the eventual spring helps make you feel better! a lesson horse at my barn had a nasty fall after tripping while jumping and it definitely hurt his confidence for a while - he struggled to come back to be ridden by beginners or very novice riders again. it's definitely a real thing. and i know all about the rider side of fear and confidence issues. it's a huge frustration, but not insurmountable!

    1. I know I will get through it and It's really not helping having a coach in the last 2 years. We have a new clinician coming up in July and hope to bring her up monthly during the 'outdoor months' if it goes well, so that will really help! The struggle is real, but not a death sentence. I just want my boy back, and my confidence will come!


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