From Endurance to Dressage
This has been one heck of a week. Strike that. It's been a hell of a month. I've been teaching for 26 years. Never before have I had a first quarter kick my butt as much as this one has, and I am not alone. Every one of my colleagues is saying the same thing. What can you do though? Adulting is hard, even when you're approaching 50.
So when I got to the barn yesterday afternoon, I immediately felt the urge to sweep the feed/tackroom floor. There was no pressing need, and it's not like anyone is going to blame me for in tracking dirt. In fact, I'm the only one who does sweep. Even so, that dirt on the floor reminded me of the mental mess that I've been packing around this week. There is something very cathartic about sweeping. Scooping poop will give me the same sense of cleaning out the cobwebs.
And then I rode Speedy. It wasn't a great ride. I was pretty tired, and my heart really wasn't in it. Speedy knew it and took full advantage. He was behind my leg and heavy. I tried to get something productive going, but all I managed to do was break our flying lead changes. Out of "nowhere" the left to right change disappeared.
Eventually I realized how behind the leg he really was. As soon as I got some more jump to the canter, the change was there. I quit on that good note, and besides, we'd been working for a solid half an hour.
I untacked and let Speedy wander off to check out the lawn. As I was hanging up his bridle, I grimaced at the caked on dirt and gunk. It was just like the floor - it didn't have to be cleaned RIGHT THEN, but I couldn't stand it. I started off by wiping it clean with a damp cloth, but that didn't satisfy me. I then used a bit of leather creme but still wasn't free of the mental muddle I've been fighting. I finally dragged out the lederbalsam and finished it off.
With my fingers already feeling sticky, I looked down at my boots and figured a little more mental housekeeping wouldn't hurt. I wiped my boots free of dust and massaged in some of my boot conditioner. I find it's easier to clean them while I am wearing them. I looked around and realized that my mental state of mind had improved.
Today's going to be a busy day. I have an early morning Battle of the Books party to host for eleven 4/5/6th graders. We have a science assembly at 8:30, and then I'll be managing the lunch time detention program during my lunch. Add to that, it's Dress Up like Your Favorite Book Character day. Nothing like throwing in a bit more crazy to an already hectic day.
My husband has already agreed to pick up sushi for dinner. Bless him.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: