From Endurance to Dressage
I started thinking about bling the other day. Some people seem to just attract bling and are able to wear it ever so casually. It looks natural on them even when their hair is a mess and their clothes are dirty, maybe especially so when they look a hot mess.
I know why I don't wear a lot of bling. It's for the same reason that I don't tend to favor "blingy" tack for my horses. You're going to wonder at the sense of my rationale, but here it is: I am a very confident person.
And before I offend anyone, that is NOT to say that it is unconfident people who wear bling. It's just why I don't need to/want to. Great. Now everyone is offended! Let me explain.
I've always been very independent. I've never really followed fads, and in fact, I sometimes find myself ahead of trends. I am okay in my own skin and don't need anyone else's approval to make me feel better about myself; I do that on my own. And while I may be very hard on myself, I know what I know, and I rarely second guess myself.
As an aside, I think being responsible for one's own happiness is the thing that makes marriages work. We each need to be responsible for our own self-worth and happiness; no one can do that for you. My husband and I have been together for more than 23 years, married for 19½. We're very happy together, but we're also happy doing our own things. And I am sure he's a bit relieved that I don't need much bling; it's cheaper for him!
All of that is to say that I don't need to draw attention to myself to feel "recognized." When I am good at something, I am happy enough if I know it, and I don't feel as though I need everyone else to know it, too. My car is the color of asphalt with no bumper stickers. I simply don't need to be noticed. And frankly, being noticed is sometimes embarrassing. So I don't wear much bling.
When it comes to my horses, bling makes me a bit uncomfortable because for me it says, Look at us; we're fabulous, (or at least we think are). I am hesitant to use bling on my boys because I don't want people to think that I think we are so great that we need to be in the spotlight. The funny thing is that when I see other riders using bling on their horses, I simply admire how pretty it looks, but it doesn't say anything to me, and it certainly doesn't shout, WOW, YOU MUST BE AWESOME! It's just pretty.
So with that realization, I've decided that I am allowed to indulge my love of pretty things. Buying a browband with some sparkle doesn't have to mean anything. It's just pretty. So not only is Speedy getting a new browband, I've also ordered two monogrammed dressage pads. They're black and white, of course, but they are at least monogrammed which moves them from nondescript to Hey! I'm a bit prettier than plain.
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%: