The other day on Facebook, Melissa Feather, Speedy G's breeder, commented that she would like to come and watch us at a show. I was horrified. We suck, we're lousy, we're showing I-NT-R-O-D-U-C-T-O-R-Y. There is no way I want Speedy's BREEDER to come and see what a TERRIBLE job I'm doing with her horse!
I am a very confident horse owner. I know with complete certainty that the health related decisions I make for my horses are spot on. Confident owner, yes. Confident endurance/trail rider, YES! Dressage rider, got nothin' for ya. Dressage has to be the most humbling of all equine disciplines. And as Piglet's mom pointed out, it is a very personal journey.
I truly see myself as a bumbling dork once my butt hits that black saddle. I feel like a legless weeble-wobble. You remember those egg-shaped toys that looked like a character? That's me. I feel so unsteady, out of balance, and ridiculous. It seems as though everyone else out there rides so ... effortlessly.
I know what you're saying, she's just fishing for compliments.
Truly, it's not that. I wish I could see myself honestly in relation to other riders. My scores seem to suggest that I ride like everyone else. I mean I scored a 63.5% MY FIRST TIME OUT! How bad can I be? I guess I need someone who doesn't know me at all and who has nothing personal invested in me to say, yep, you're doing pretty well. Why don't you just do a little more of this and a little less of that ... Maybe I could believe that.
So back to the idea that dressage is personal. I am definitely competing solely against myself. I WANT to be better than Introductory, not because there's anything wrong with this level, I just don't want to be stuck at ANY level. I want to advance because to me, it will mean that I am improving.
Okay ... blah, blah, blah, poor baby. Want some cheese with that "whine?" I know that's what you're thinking. I am, too.
So what's the point to all of this? Is it that I need to recognize my strengths and build on them? Get over myself, already? Just get out there and keep riding? After that gloriously "connected" ride Speedy G gave me on Saturday, I do feel that we aren't stuck. We are advancing. Three days ago I wouldn't have considered writing that, and in three more days I'll probably be whining again.
I guess I need to take it when we've got it and hold on to the feeling!