Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Dear Work,

First I want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to live my life as it is today.  There are days when I find you so exciting that I can not wait to throw myself into your all consuming embrace.  And Work, sometimes I feel that I can not be without you as if you complete me. 

Today was a hard one and I think you owe me an apology.  I came to you with great joy, eager to dance the happy dance...  Oh, I wanted to revel in a weekend of great fun and accomplishment...  And you wanted it to be all about you until the dance became a shuffle. 

Work, I gave you today...  Remember, tomorrow let's work really hard to find a happy balance.

Your lover,



Sugar and I went cross country schooling yesterday.   And, for the first time in a long time (maybe ever), we had fun.  I can actually say that I had a good time while doing it.  And, when Eventing Trainer gave us a course and asked who wanted to start, I raised my hand and went for it.

I had no anxiety, no real nerves... it was if the past two years disappeared and I was moving up to Novice for the first time.  And as Sug's Twenty-Something-Friend said, "We did boxes, barrels and benches!" 
used with permission www.dexterpix.com

Sug was right with me and sometimes taking me...  For some of you that's a given but for us, it was a gift!  And, I even asked to jump our scary stuff when the Eventing Trainer overlooked them.  For me, that is a miracle.

I think we may be back... really back! 

Dear Work,

Won't you let me keep my happy buzz?


Wednesday, May 21, 2014


I confess I am an overthinker and, I believe I am not alone.  There is a ghost lurking about... a spirit, if you will...  there is a whisper that maybe Sugar is still Not Quite Right (NQR). 
Puppies are worry free

Who knows for sure?  I, for one, can no longer judge or feel what is real because the ghost of her last injury haunts me.  "Is she ok?"  "Is she losing her hind end?  "Why is she doing that?"   "Hey, can you just look at her and tell me if there is anything wrong?"  "Can you look at her and tell me what you think?"  "Why does her neck keep popping when we do carrot stretches to the left?"  "Does she look dull to you?"

Is there anyone out there?

Next weekend is our first event of the season and my neurosis grow stronger...  "Is she ok?  Is there anyone out there?"

It occurred to me that wondering/obsessing/ignoring/moving on/worrying was not going to make for a good event or even a clear head.  The eerie haunting, either from the fear of hurting her further, of getting hurt because she tried and failed or forcing a hurt horse to perform, is so consuming that the joy of an adventure is barely a whisper.

 So, I called the vet and asked her to come out and give her opinion.  Call it an exorcism, a saging of bad spirits or a cleansing of energy, when she gives me her blessing, Sugar and I are moving on!   I truly suspect (as does the millions of folks I've bothered) that she will say she is fit to do Beginner Novice at GMHA.

And, I feel good underneath the worry...  I feel like we are gonna be ok!  Vet visit first and then, let the games begin!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Used with permission
Now, if you are close members of my family or intimate friends there would be a slight intake of breath, a quick move forward and then...  "You went on a date?"   My confused and quizzical look would bring about a sigh, then, "Oh, something with your horse... were you at a show?  And, my sister would get it right, "You had a jumping lesson and it went well.  Am I right?"

I have a dream:

One day, I'll go out on a date and no one will get excited.  And, I'll have a jumping lesson and it will not register as an event - at all! 

Yes, I have a dream!

God bless my trainers!  Both understood that having 6 weeks of little activity and no jumping takes a toll on the average-GRRRR-seeking-on-the-dark-side-of-middle-aged event rider's psyche.  Just before Sugar's injury, I was doing it - jumping novice height over complex courses and feeling like a million bucks.  A break just whittled away the confidence so painstakingly built.

Oh, back to the trainers... I started back with my Dressage Trainer (former Intermediate Eventer and Trainer).  My wild spring hussy needed some taming that first lesson so we worked on regaining the half seat lost while perfecting our winter dressage.  And we jumped a cross rail until Ms Sugar agreed that I was in charge and that a cross rail had no resemblance to the jumps at Rolex and that we could land straight without hijinxs.
True GRRR!

I was very anxious the lesson two days later.  We brought back scary items - the dreaded gate and added some height.  Focus was on rhythm, push from her hind end and...  FOR ME to think about what I wanted upon landing and DO IT!  You see, I tend to spend a bit more time than I should congratulating myself for getting over the jump rather than riding the course... 

Last night, I had no anxiety and I worked hard at setting the intention to have fun.  {{{Sigh...  One day I won't have to work so hard at this.}}}  That, in itself, was a great accomplishment because this lesson was with the Eventing Trainer and we added every scary jump the City Barn had available.  Gates, flowers, oxers and more gates... 

And each jump set felt better.  Sugar was spooky but I was determined to smile and get over the jump and ride a course.  I'm not sure I felt that my riding was pretty but it caused no harm.  The last jump was fantastic...  I had the rhythm, added active leg two strides from the biggest oxer and then gave Sugar her neck. 

Shhhh...  don't tell anyone but that feeling of hitting the jump perfectly and having your horse jump powerfully up, under and through you and then landing lightly is better than _____________!  (Insert your word here.  I'm holding mine back ;)

As I thanked my Eventing Trainer, I told her... "Next time I'm ready for a butt kicking!"

Thursday, May 1, 2014


Used with permission
Have you ever done something...  just a little naughty?  Have you ever dated a bad boy or girl?  Or have you shown your High School yearbook to your nieces and nephews and saw a cryptic story or two that maybe just isn't rated PG?  Maybe, just maybe you were one of those kids that danced on the edge of goodness yet always remaining a GOOD GIRL...

Sugar will be 15 tomorrow.  When I think of that number, I am shocked at how fast time has flown by...  I am in love with a wild thing...

At some point in the "near" future, I will be looking for my next eventing horse.  And, as I window shop the ads, I have a better idea of what I want that next horse to be but my friends aren't so sure: 

"Ugly" said one Barn Peep.  "Get an ugly one because beautiful doesn't quite work out well for you!" 

Used with permission
"Better get the blessings of all your trainers, the Bestest Eventing Buddy and maybe your therapist before you do the PPE.  Knowing you, you'll buy beautiful, talented and challenging.  The next one should be easy and fun."

"Nothing but a packer."

You see, I'm in love with a wild thing and I think they know it. 

Happy Birthday Sugar!  You have been my dream come true!  Depending on the time of day and the results of our last outing, my description of you changes.  Yes, there is no denying your beauty, your athleticism, your power and grace.  You have all of that!

Honest as they come, you can't be trusted 100%... "ride every jump as if she'll stop".  And when I think I know you, you surprise me.  You've carried teenagers like an agreeable pony, taught working students decent dressage, and soared to great heights with your professional and/or talented friends.

You hate to hack but are awesome on adventures.  We doubted that you could fox hunt and you are one of the best hunt horses out there.  You particpated in a parade with marching bands in front and in back of us and looked like you were born to the job - puffed up and regal.  Yet, moving the chair in the indoor will cause a meltdown that requires great riding talent to ride through.

Happy Birthday Sugar!  When your nose peeks out of your stall door, I know that I am truly in love with a wild thing!  And, no matter how I describe you...  I wouldn't change a thing.  {{{Maybe}}}