I know I came here to find other equestrians, branch out, connect, share experiences & keep an archive of my riding success and difficulties. Its grown to be one my favorite things about my life actually. I've made real life friendships through blogging and its connected me with some intelligent, respectful, wonderful & talented people all across America (& Europe!)
|Color matching on fleek|
To a point.
Yesterday's post brought to light some VERY helpful tips (thank you everyone!), which I will share momentarily.
But it also brought about some fierce drama that I was not expecting, and frankly, was seriously offended by.
I'm not pointing ANYONE out, and this spanned my facebook, instagram and blog account, but by no means do I find it OK for anyone to come onto someone else's page (or PM that person) and TELL them what they NEED to do with their horse.
I welcome suggestions. Always always always. I literally ask for them sometimes because I LOVE all of my readers and value their knowledgeable help highly. The connections are a wealth of information!
What I do NOT welcome and do not take kindly to is people telling me what I need to do with mMY horse and my life. Informing me I need a coach, or need to take him to training, or need to do this or that is slightly overstepping boundaries. I am VERY aware of those things. But it comes down to resources. I am a person who has never and most likely will never, have an abundance of free time and money to throw at a problem. Don't you think if I did, I would have already sent him to training, boarded him somewhere with better facilities or put him in more consistent work?
Yes. I would have.
Also, I believe that any rider with a pulse knows coaches are a wonderful asset. I literally said I need one in the last post. I also have stated previously that I intend to take him to bi-weekly lessons with the woman who owns the barn I was hoping to board with. Not sure how the lines got crossed or missed but I have NEVER considered myself above average or above needing coaching. I just flat out can't afford it on a regular basis. Welcome to the real world.
Money would solve a lot of problems for a lot of people. But I think it takes a little more grit and determination to solve problems with less resources available to you & I am wildly offended by anyone who thinks otherwise.
Sure, I post about frustrations on here. Thats why I blog. But I am doing the best I can with what I have available. For those who are wondering, thats about an hour and 20 minutes "free time" after a 45 minute one way commute/8 hour workday, to cram any sort of barn time in before the sun sets. Not to mention other household/life chores and activities. I have to work, really hard, to pay for my horse and I take pride in that, & I don't come here to be judged on my skill and competence as a rider, trainer and owner of a difficult horse when I dont have enough time in the day/week/month to ride my horse on a consistent 5 day basis. I think we all know how hard it is to admit difficulty or failure on a public forum, but here we all are! I shouldn't be told thats wrong. I shouldn't be shamed for my availability and I definitely shouldn't be told I'm not allowed to enjoy my horse when I can.
All of that being said, I feel like I know my horse better than anyone and I absolutely believe the field is the root issue here. Sure, there are others sprinkled about, as any OTTB would have, but I stand by the fact that it is a night and day difference between off property/road work and riding in the back field.
|whew...eq NOT on fleek|
For example. Today was a windy, cold and slightly rainy day & my neighbors were shooting off their ridiculously loud guns and yet I still tacked up my horse because it was day 3 out of 7 I had the time to even consider riding.
To test my theory, we set off down the road. Guns roaring, wind blowing, he took it all in stride like a champ. He was a little tense at first, but with the hint someone posted (half halting UP not back) he immediately and visibly relaxed and STAYED that way. Even when Levi scared up 3 MASSIVE scavenger birds and they flapped in his face.. he jumped a little, snorted at them and thought real hard about bolting....and didnt.
It fully explains why for SEVEN whole months, he was 100% perfection in that field and then as soon as the wet cold season rolled around it was no longer Gucci with him. Makes perfect sense to me.
I just wish I would've thought about it long before I made myself sick with anxiety worrying about ulcers, diseases, lameness, tack and a mirade of other things.
I literally do not have any other explanation for the 180* turns. 3 magical rides on the road vs 2 horrible rides in the field are pretty solid stats in my book & I'm going to close the case for now. I realize he is not perfect in any of these photos...but htey show a MUCH more relaxed way of going and he is beginning to move FORWARD again, I wish y'all could have felt the difference in his entire body. He was willing to go, his back was relaxed, he followed the bit through the contact and he was a complete joy. If that doesn't say something, I don't know what does.
Hoping to get into the lesson program around the 28th and go on a relatively steady bi-weekly basis.
All of this being said y'all, I appreciate and adore those of you who show your support. Again, I am not pointing fingers at anyone who even reads this blog and commented. Just making general statements about the treatment I received throughout social media yesterday.
|Hover horse & derp dog|
Peace & love y'all. I leave you with a very derp picture of the Levi.