Thursday, April 30, 2015

Real Talk

Here it is.  I am just going to put some stuff out there.  You may not like my opinion but I don't need you to.  Yes I have been absent from the blogging world much this past year.  Sometimes you can't keep up with life let alone "extras" but I have been reading periodically.  And quite honestly it is getting old.  When I started out on this weird experiment I had no idea of what it would be.  Nor did I know I would get to become friends through this strange catalyst.  But I do have some great friends through the blogging world. I have learned an incredible amount by reading and writing and reading.  I don't intend to eliminate the blogosphere from my world but it's draw for me is diminishing.  I find myself scrolling passed more and more posts from blogs I typically have read in the past.  I started to ask myself why and I had a realization.  The less time I have to read to more I prioritize what I really want to spend my time doing.  And I realized that the blogs I scroll passed are too happy.  Weird right? 

Then I started to think about it.  I enjoy reading and learning and I can't learn anything from "look at Foofoo isn't she amazing and precious and perfect?".  All. the. time.  Now don't get me wrong I love to read about the highs, and the break through's and the successes.  But I have been around the block too many times to know that life with horses is sometimes more down's than up's and many failures come before a success.  Or at least myself and anyone I know in horses it works that way.  I am in no way saying I enjoy the struggles but that is where I learn something.  Maybe it is just me but I guess I have to learn things the hard way.

I feel I have been guilty of this in the past especially as of late because I hate to come on and sound like a complainer the once every 4 months you ever hear from me.  And I don't claim to have even a remotely interesting blog.  Why anyone would read my thoughts I do no know.  I am just putting an idea or thought out there.  Take it or leave it.  It isn't a big deal one way or the other it is just an observation and slight frustration.  Write what you want and what you feel you need to. It is your space and you don't need me to do so.  I just thought I would offer my two cents on the matter.  Don't be afraid to not be perfect.  Don't hold back because of the few fools out there that are just offensive.  I like the REAL you.  The good along with the bad.  Actually I may like the bad a little more ;)

And after that I feel the need to share an awful moment I had on Monday. 

The Setting:
Spring in the air.  Warm, glowing, spring afternoon. Grass is green trees are budding.

The Backstory:
Myself and two of my daughters (DD's#1&3) tack up for our first trail ride on the trails at our new farm.  And my 8 year olds first trail ride ever.  The spouse and daughter #2 are trekking out on foot with fishing poles in hand.  The plan: to meet at the beach.  I was unsure how it would go because Steady has been out of work for so many months and then on top of that he is typically quite a hot mess the first time out on the trails each year.  Then the last time I rode DD #1's Haffy out on the trails a week earlier she bolted and had quite the bronc display.  Which for me aboard is laughable.  Trust me when it is your precious DD aboard it is gut wrenching.  Like watch your whole world flying through the air and being completely terrified for their life but having to hold it together and coach them through it, hard.  And let's add in itty bitty DD on her kind and obedient but sometimes feisty pony out for the first time. It is anyone's guess if we will all return entact.  But I am not one to let nerves or fear stand in mine or my children's way of a good time so we went for it.

The Plot:
It was surprisingly a wonderful ride out to the beach.  Down the beach and all of them navigating some pretty treacherous terrain.  Think straight down and straight up a muddy steeeeeeep hill.  Climbing/hopping over drift logs and making our way over huge rock/stream bed.  My kids are fearless and it is quite awesome.  Steady was antsy but manageable and the ponies were angels.  We met up with the spouse and DD #2 and the corgi.  We played a bit at beach. took a rest on a log and then headed back to the house.  DD #1 says, "I want to trot some on the way home".  I explain that while I am sure she would be fine I don't trust my horse that much and I am so happy/surprised with the way things have gone so far that I just want to keep the rest of the ride stress free and enjoyable so we are keeping it at a walk.  We get to the steeeeeep hill and like the way out I explain again that there will be ONLY WALKING down and up this hill.  We go down, cross the stream.  Steady is in the middle at this point.  DD #1 and haffy in front and DD #3 in back.  For whatever reason an OTTB needs to be a complete asshat (i.e. NONE) he starts canter/rearing/galloping/bounding up the effing steeeeep muddy hill.  Did I mention how steep it was?  I really do not know exactly what he was doing.  All I know is we are already nearly vertical and his front feet are coming way to far off the ground for my comfort level.  I try to hold him back but it just makes him get higher up front so I say screw it and let him go and kick him on.  I figure even if he gallops the rest of the way up it is safer than rearing our way up.  He get's to the top and rears and spins.  And I am pissed.  Oh the therapy my children will need one day.  My husband said he could hear me cursing down at the beach.  I proceed to jump off my horse and beat his ass.  Report me to the authorities I don't care the horse got it from me.  I am sorry but you try to kill me you better believe you WILL regret it, not sorry.  We did some hind end yielding until he started to focus on me.  I got back on and he was still way to spazzy for me so I got back off and did a bit more.  Holy balls that was terrifying.  I am not scared easily but that scared me and when I get scared I get pissed.  We did complete the ride home pretty uneventfully.  Steady was amped but still obedient.  That I am used to with him. 

The Conclusion:
I was questioning my commitment to this horse on the way home.  I know for %100 fact that if this horse was in full time work he would be a serious bad ass working machine.  But that is not my life and it won't be my life for the foreseeable future.  I have too many irons in the fire for that to be my life.  It's tough to have such a freaking awesome horse yet not the life style to cultivate it.  In other words, amazingly athletic, intelligent horse without enough work gets board and makes up their own "fun".


  1. First: I totally agree and have been doing a lot of scrolling myself lately. I always try to write about the hard stuff, and have been accused of being too down as a result, but that's the journey. Horse is currently in partial training while I go back to doing stalls to pay for it because I couldn't get the job done myself. White flag waved, not a good enough rider, but it's all out there.

    Second: Oh Steady. I am in complete agreement with your handling of the situation. Sometimes you just have to get tough with them. He is all of those things, amazingly athletic and intelligent! We miss you guys around here.

    1. ^^ This. I have gotten a lot of criticism in the past for being "overly negative". Honestly, sometimes we need to be our own cheerleaders because it seems like if we can't see the positives in ourselves, nothing can be successful.

    2. Same! I feel liek all I do is complain, but I agree with Amy, I find the hardships better than the "ups". It makes life interesting.

      And Amy you know tooooo well of my struggle with B

  2. I totally get what you are saying - I think we all blog for different reasons. My main reason is to be able to look back and see progress - esp thru pics and video. I appreciate when bloggers put it all out there and share their lows along with their highs - lets me know I am not alone in my struggles with Riva.

    That being said - when you put yourself out there, you are open to the world at large comments. People can be nasty with their comments. I am tough enough on myself without anyone's help.

    I am sure you will get a lot of feedback on this post and I am looking forward to it!

  3. I hear you too! I skip quite a bit when bloggers are just recapping their weekly lesson over and over (note: I understand that our blogs are like our diaries for most of us so capturing that info for ourselves is totally understandable, we just have to realize not everyone will sit through it, read it and comment on it that our horse finally got 2 correct steps of shoulder-in or whatever). And then you feel bad because you dont want others to have drama but the drama is what makes the reading interesting to some extent. Anyways, glad everyone is OK after that trail ride! And I get what you're saying about your horse too, best of luck as you make that decision as to what the right situation is for you and him <3

  4. Add me to the mostly scrolling list.

    Also been holding back on posting on the blog lately, mainly because I can't afford to do anything interesting with my horse that could generate some progress - lessons, clinics etc - as they generally cost money.

    I'm in the process of scraping together enough resources to build a house (by myself) so just keeping my horse right now is a luxury.

    Besides no "check out how awesome my perfect horse is doing posts", I cannot do any of the ever popular "look at all the expensive things I bought for me and my perfect horse" posts.

    I also cannot afford to get banged up and miss any work, so I've been keeping the riding to a non-challenging minimum upkeep level. Instead, I live vicariously through other bloggers who are setting and achieving goals. Mine are on hold for the next year or so. Adulting is tough.

    Congrats on the fine set of lady balls you have btw. Steady has definitely met his match. ;D

  5. Sounds like you made the right decision for the ride at the time. I know conventional wisdom is to ride through it and not let the horse "get away" with bad behavior, but in real life, we have other things to think about. It is more important that your kids have a mom than it is that your horse get educated. You continue to amaze me with what you can take on and deal with. There is no shame is backing off when you need to and there is nothing wrong with letting Steady sit. Or rehoming him. Or leasing him. Or whatever you need to do to keep your sanity.

    As for overly happy blogs, I don't know. I'm always looking for a real story of real people to tag along with. I tend to blog about positive takeaways from rides/horses because I don't like the kind of person that has a half decent ride and then only takes away negatives. To each their own, though.

  6. Waffling back and forth on replying to this. There's been sociological studies proving that people enjoy it when: 1) People complain excessively 2) When people are unabashed at their awesomeness (not actually being humble about their good fortune but echoing it from the mountain tops as loudly as possible).

    I don't enjoy reading about other people's misery, I'm too busy for that and I hope people get out of their misery, because its a shitty place to be.

  7. As a Mom, my first thought was to wonder how the ponies reacted to your horse's behavior. I figured that was what actually scared you and made you so angry.

    Authenticity and competence are what draw me to blogs. Positive or negative, as long as it is genuine, I am okay with it.

  8. I love your posts Amy! They always crack me up. Your daughters are so awesome, by the way. So what if you taught them a few new cuss words, they also have learned how to stick things out, and be confident in their actions. :) Your new home sounds so awesome!

  9. scary situation about the ride home - glad it didn't escalate to anything worse, tho it certainly seems hair-raising enough!!

    re: other blogs, i prefer authentic, real talk more than any alternative - but i'm also a strange mixture between hopeless optimism and basic practicality and get easily frustrated by constant (and unproductive) negativity

  10. I'm not sure where i fit on that continuum. I was careful not to post too much negative after my horse died because I didn't want to be negative nelly. That said, blogs shouldn't be like FB- you know everything is sunshine and unicorns.

  11. I scroll and look for certain things to catch me. Its not always the same people, which is why I follow so many. I'm honestly surprised anyone reads what I have to say. Everyone's story is a little different and I like that. I can't pretend to be someone else or pretend something else is happening in my life. I wouldn't expect anyone else to change either. Anyway, I think many people scroll. We all connect to different things, it's ok.

  12. I've found that now that i have 2 kids I am only recapping things shortly on my blog for myself... I don't have time for lots of chit chat lol.

    You have to do what's best for you :)

    Glad you are all safe from the trail ride!!

  13. First off glad trail ride ended safely. Secondly, I mostly agree with you. Personally my blog is 90% for me, either to be able to look back, get others input, or have a narcissistic moment and enjoy praise. ;) I try tompit media when possible because I tend to skim for pics if busy then read as I can. Videos are more for me, unless I do something awesome like fall, then its for everyone's entertainment.

  14. Yikes!! I'm glad you are okay and I hope Steady learned something from all of that. What a brat!! Having a truly athletic horse like Steady can be really challenging (he reminds me of a Border Collie MUST HAVE JOB). I'll take my happy to be a pasture puff and get ridden occasionally, uncomplicated guy... I don't think I could handle a horse of Steady's caliber! I have to admit I laughed out loud at the kids need therapy because of mom cursing part hehe.

    As for the good/bad stuff on the blogs... I used to blog about my every thought and a lot of them were really negative.. then I got burned by someone who sent really ugly emails to me. I almost quit blogging because it hurt so much. After that I just started writing about the positives only. Eventually I started blogging about everything again (because the main purpose of my blog is so I can remember everything), but I don't put all of me into it... I keep it strictly about my horse. I sometime write about my fear issues, but it's not personal at all and that makes me sad because I love blogs that really let you inside the blogger's head so you feel like you really know them. I don't care if what they are writing about is good or bad, as long as it's not the constant, woe is me, my life sucks, what's the point kind of negativity. There's a difference between that and in general complaining, getting something off your chest. I have to admit I've been a LOT happier in my life in general since I cut a lot of negativity out of my life. I used to be a constant complainer and I only ever saw the negatives in life... it sucked. Now that I try to focus on the positive it seems like a lot more positive stuff happens. Or maybe it just seems that way because I don't dwell on the bad stuff anymore. :)

    I don't know why you think no one would want to read your blog. I LOVE your blog and I have since the very first day I started reading it. You are so open and honest about your struggles with Steady that your accomplishments feel so HUGE! I miss your blog, but I do understand it taking a back seat to real life. I've been so busy that I haven't been able to blog much or read much and I miss it like crazy, but sometimes that's just life. I thought for a minute while reading this that you were saying you were going to quit blogging... please don't!! Not completely anyway!

  15. It's a tough balance to strike -- between sharing the good and the bad -- on your blog. It's a balance I strive to achieve (mostly for my own sanity) but it's not easy.


Steady and I love your feedback, so don't be shy!