dancing horses

dancing horses

Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Full Truth

This weekend Carmen and I are headed to our first 'big' show. It's an Equine Canada Gold/Bronze show.

The ring is inside a hockey arena so it's got seating that's above the ring, plus lots of openings and lined with plexiglass.

not spooky, right? RIGHT?

It's also coinciding with cooler weather and Carmen has become more feisty.


I'm okay with feisty and sassy. I'm trying to not worry about the spinning/bolting and her shutting me out.

It's one thing to go to a small schooling show that's so supportive. And this show is really not going to be that different - other than the venue.

Yet I am still freaking out.

My demons are speaking up and gaining ground:

  • you are going get hurt
  • Carmen is going to bolt on you
  • everyone will see how terrible a rider you are
  • you are over-facing her/yourself and going to look like a fool. 
But why? Why have I lost my confidence? My brain knows that if it doesn't go well it's not the end of the world. 

The rest of me is saying that my brain is stupid. 

I can't take this attitude into the saddle. Because that will make everything worse. 

So instead of getting ready/organize and/or riding I sit here and blog. 

Because maybe, just maybe, if I put it in print I can take a look and see if for what it is: self-doubt that, while it's not without merit, is not the full truth. 

Part of the truth is that Carmen can be spooky/bolty. She can decide that nope, she's not gonna to listen to me and threaten to escalate if I don't back down. 

The other part is that I have ridden through her antics before.  I have tools to use. 

The final piece of the truth is that Carmen can look to me for leadership and is doing so more and more. 

So it's not a total crap shoot as to how it will turn out. 

But before I ride my horse I have to corral my demons. 

Wish me, not luck, but strength of mind and belief in myself. In Carmen. In where we are now-  not where we've been. 




20 comments:

  1. Our "big" show this summer was the same rating and I had a lot of similar worries. You're going to do great! At ours, everyone was even more kind and supportive than the schooling shows. The judges were also really, really good - so much excellent feedback. I think you're going to have fun :)

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  2. i know how you're feeling right now - self doubt has this awful way of creeping in at the least expected or most unwelcome times. you guys got this tho! you've put in the work and training and Carmen *does* trust your leadership! i hope you end up having a blast!!

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  3. I feel like anxiety can be such a determent, but it also important to not let it cripple you. My blog is my outlet for my anxiety as well. Sometimes I think I blog too much about the "negative" things that it makes it seem like I don't enjoy Annie, but I truly do and sometimes I just need to let out all the frustrations or insecurities so I can see clearer. Good luck to you and Carmen in your tests - you guys are going to rock it :)

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  4. Best wishes to you and Carmen. Try to visualize your rides going exactly the way you'd like to see them go, and keep rehearsing that in your mind. If you can transmit some of that to Carmen, that may help - both of you will be focussed on what you do want to happen, rather than on what you don't want to happen. Easier said than done, of course, but might keep your mind on more productive thoughts.

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  5. Practice intense positive visualization. Imagine every step of it and imagine it ALL going well. Even if it takes you 10 or 15 minutes--block out some time to do this. It will make a difference. Trust me. Good luck and have fun.

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  6. Wishing you the strength to believe in yourself! Look at far you've come to get to this show and remember you can do it. M

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  7. Sending good vibes! You got this :D I know you guys will do great.

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  8. Your strength and perseverance are blindingly clear, but I know how loud the demons can be. This show is part of the journey, not the destination so just shove those demons back into the hole they crawled out of and remember you have already won. You've got this.

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  9. You got this! You've been through much worse with her, and overcome. Good luck and stay confident!! :)

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  10. I second Linda's recommendation to positively visualize. We are all cheering you and Carmen on!!

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  11. You can do it! One movement at a time. Just entering the ring is a huge accomplishment:)

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  12. Try to go in with the mind set that it is just another schooling show. Which, in a sense, it is for you guys. You are teaching/schooling her to be okay at bigger shows. And, honestly, they aren't that much different (just a lot more money LOL). Same test, etc.

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  13. Woo hoo. You can do it. I go through this self-doubt thing too. Of course, I'm 100% used to humiliating myself at events. But I do fear falling off/getting injured, so I get it. Sometimes you just have to push through it. You can do it.

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  14. You can do this! It is so hard thinking too much. You have been through a lot and do have tools to help her through it.

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  15. I don't know how to write thank you to each and every one of you. other then what I just did. Great advice and support from people who understand is priceless!

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  16. I have a new training horse moving in from out of state and the last two nights, my brain has been keeping me up with all the worst case scenarios. What if I get hurt? What if the horse gets hurt? What if another horse hurts me and I have to refund the money because I can't ride? What if I don't get along with the horse? What if the owner isn't happy? What if what if what if.... Logically I know it'll probably be fine, but my brain won't. shut. up. I relate to this.

    But that arena set up is SUPER cool!

    Good luck and let us know how it goes :)

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  17. Remember how awesome she was for you in your walk in the forest? Because Carmen knows you are her leader and she believes in you. You've got this!

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  18. I have no doubt it will go well, but when I was nervous about showing a green horse it helped me to think about what was the worst thing that could happen,and realizing none of it was that bad. She can't go anywhere, either in the warm up or show ring, even if she does bolt. People admire that you've brought a difficult/sensitive mare to this point and the only judgement they'll make if Carmen has issues is that you're brave to put yourself out there and keep working on things. You know your riding is good - look at your rider scores (even when she's difficult), your photos and videos. You've already proven that you aren't over facing you or her because you've had great success at three previous provincially sanctioned shows - this is the next logical step. Your training and judgement are solid. Go have fun and enjoy the experience!

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  19. Think positive and don't defeat yourself before you even get in the saddle.

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