I work at home which is wonderful since I have a five year old. My job is very flexible and allows me time to go out to the barn most days and still be able to be home when the kidlet gets out of school. But then there are those days when I just don't feeeeeel like working and when my brain starts pondering other things. Today, I'm pondering my choice of horse. I read a well written blog on buying/owning young horses over at http://equestrianink.blogspot.com/. And it got me thinking.....bad idea. Very. Bad. Idea.
The two things that I'm thinking about today are: Is this the right horse for me? Yes, I've had this inner monologue before and posted about not knowing if Tess was my 'heart horse'. She will be six in May, but that's another few years before she's considered a solid citizen. Which is a lot of ups and downs that I'm not sure I'm prepared for. I read other blogs where people are excited about new goals. Trail rides, schooling shows, jumping. And I'm working on not letting my pony scare the every living daylights out of me and getting her to trot without throwing a hissy fit. This is not my idea of fun.
So then I start fantasizing about buying an older, broke horse. What would I do? I think then I'd work more on myself. Lessons without stirrups? Yes, please! Trail ride to the beach? If you can trailer me, my horse and I would LOVE to go along! Jumping some crossrails? Sure, Old Dobbin here is a pro over crossrails and as quiet as can be. Is this a fantasy? Would I be bored? Am I fooling myself?
The hard part is that selling horses right now is not easy. There is ALWAYS a market for well trained, experienced horses but green bean Arabs with a problem going forward? Not so much. I can imagine showing Tess to potential buyers. Oh, pick up her feet? Well, I'm too chicken to pick up the back feet because she waves them around too much. Yeah, there's a bit of bucking when you want to trot. Or canter. Or walk faster. Oh, yeah she's still a bit spooky even though she's been ridden in the same damn arena for 9 months. It's not that she's at the bottom of the barrel. A confident rider would have her whipped into shape in one ride. And her movement is lovely. But she's a dime a dozen right now. You can find one almost like her for FREE. And I'm WAY WAY WAY too picky to just sell her to some yahoo looking for a cheap horse.
But if you came to my barn and said "I LOVE LOVE LOVE your horse and wish she was mine." I'm not sure I'd turn you away...... And then there's the 'other hand' where I think that I need to work through this issues or they will turn up WITH EVERY HORSE. Since the pony bucks mostly just with me, it's obviously a ME issue. Ahhhhh...the hamster on my brain wheel is getting veeerrry tired.
The second thought I've been thinking about is: What is it that I really want to do with a horse? I think the answer is everything. I want to ride dressage and take some dressage and jumping lessons (tiny jumps. baby hunter jumps, really.). I want to ride on a trail ride if I want to. Around the neighborhood if that's all the trail I got. I want to go to the beach. I want to have a horse that is game for whatever I want to try. A partner in crime. I want to ride English. Or Western. Or bareback!
My trainer really, truly believes that my horse has that potential in her. That if I stick with her over the next few years we can get there. But it's sure hard to see me striking out on a trail ride when I practically have panic attacks in the arena. Monday I was riding her after our ride on a loose rein when she saw something scary and wheeled around and ran off. She doesn't trust me yet and I don't trust her. But given my confidence issues, will we ever get there? Or are we a doomed relationship where we can only talk about each others 'potential' while we argue about what's happening 'right now'.
Now that I've got that off my chest, I am going to try and do something more productive....like working to pay for the saddle fitter who's coming out on Monday. Yeah saddle fitter!
p.s. I totally had a dream about the saddle fitter last night and that she said ALL of the pony's problems were because her saddle was pinching her shoulders. If this comes true, I will build a shrine to the saddle fitter. No joke. Complete with incense, candles and crystals.