Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Well Worth It

I don't kid myself, private lessons with a great coach on a talented horse are probably never going to come cheap. My lessons on Audrey come in fairly reasonably priced (I think) at $75 for about 30-45 min of riding.

That $75 a week for "extra" horse expenses is a stretch for me, so there's been a bit of budget shuffling to make it happen. G and I keep our own finances and don't share a bank account, but I do still struggle with a bit of guilt over choosing to spend $300 a month on something solely for myself with nothing visibly concrete to show for it.

Sorry honey, can't afford my own new car, so I'm borrowing your truck again....my budget is dedicated to horses of a different sort ;) G and I joke that our bank accounts are called "For Horses" and "Not For Horses", no prizes for guessing whose is whose, lol
I had another super lesson this week on the ever amazing Audrey. I was thinking about my life choices on my drive home tonight and yeah, $75 a week is so worth it, I have no regrets. Not only am I learning things I'll carry forward with me far into the future, but the amount of confidence I'm gaining in myself and my riding is invaluable too. Don't get me wrong, it's certainly not all sunshine and rainbows all the time, but the tough stuff is what's motivated me to get back to running, eating better, hitting the gym, and generally looking after myself. All very good things that will make me a happier, healthier, and better person.

We're using the term "running" loosely right now...better look out, my 30 min 3k game is strong ;)

I hate to admit this too, but it's been a very long time (actually, I'm not sure it's EVER happened) since I've really, wholeheartedly been excited to ride, especially in a lesson. I do enjoy riding, and I certainly enjoy learning. I like feeling like I'm making progress. I always get a lot out of lessons. But there's always been that feeling in the back of my mind that maybe I can't do this. What if this this is clinician who finally levels with me that I'm wasting my time? 

Can't even.

Bridget is fantastic in a million ways, but I feel like she can be super unforgiving. If you don't get it perfectly right, she won't waste any time trying. Actually, even if you get it perfectly right, she might not bother :) Not always ideal for someone whose default is to think they are not a good enough rider. Prior to life with Bridget, I had big struggles off and on with feeling overhorsed, so riding was at best anxiety inducing, at worst, dangerous. Still, I love it, go figure. 

I owe Bridget the world though, for getting my confidence back enough to gallop and jump again. I might feel like a completely inadequate rider and trainer with her sometimes, but we've certainly made a dent in my horsey bucket list!

This is the first time in my life all that baggage is pretty much left at the door. Riding Audrey is just straight up fun. I love her. I am 0% nervous on her, I have no agenda. I have no shows or goals  on the horizon to stress over, and coach I feel very comfortable with. I can make mistakes and neither Audrey nor EC really care. So long as I'm trying, Audrey will do her best to figure out what I want and while she certainly lets me know when I'm not up to standard, she forgets about it just moments later, no grudges held.

Sophie also holds zero grudges. And yes, that's B still sulking in the background because I put fly spray on them (gasp!). She hilarious, I just love her curmudgeonly self. Once I start brushing or otherwise giving Sophie attention, you'd better believe B is suddenly my best friend and Sophie is not allowed to share, lol

 So,  all that's left is to feel super excited, like small child excited, to just get in the saddle and see what Audrey and I can do today. Yes, I will make a million mistakes, no it won't be perfect. But you can be certain it will be fun! 





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15 comments

  1. I’m so glad you’re finally feeling that excitement in riding, esp the lessons with Audrey !! It isn’t always buttercups and rainbows but it can’t be always an anxiety ridden nerves fest every time either

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    1. It's really nice to feel like my comfort zone has expanded outside of just Bridget :) I've been riding lots of different horses in hopes of getting over my tendency to not be super brave on other horses, so even just having one more on the list that I trust 100% makes me very happy!

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  2. That is the best feeling ever!

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  3. i am so glad you found something that clicks lesson wise. So worth the money in my book. I know how the cost can creep up on you. I am going to meet the dressage trainer this Friday at the place i hope to haul to and imagine my surprise when I found out her lesson fee is 75. Not a bad cost but I was so spoiled paying 60!!! for Emily lessons. GOD I miss Emily :) HA but for the instruction it is so worth it, and you get to ride Audrey you lucky dog, I will be stuck on Mr (I CANT RELAX MY BACK) Remus HA HA HA

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    1. It's so nice putting the work into your own horse though! Audrey does come with a few quirks I have to work through and back in the days when she was really green I remember wondering why I was paying to ride someone else's not-so-fun horse!

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  4. I love this post so much and I’m so happy for you!

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  5. Wow, what a great mind space to be in! So happy for you :)

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    1. I'm feeling so zen about my riding right now. That's SO weird for me!

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  6. Sometimes I feel guilty about all the $$ I spend on lessons, too, but they really are soooo valuable. Plus you get to ride Audrey!

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    1. Right? I feel like good lessons affect most other things in my life, even if it's just simply by making me feel extra positive for a few hours after. Audrey is very special to me, and worth all my extra pennies, I won't lie :)

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  7. How fun! Many moons ago I took lessons on a PSG horse that would also go in just a neck rope. One of my best riding memories ever is doing "twos" with him bridleless. Money well spent!

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    1. That's sort of how I feel - checking off so many 'firsts' and bucket list things with her that I feel like the memories alone are going to far out value the monetary costs.

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  8. I think happiness and self satisfaction, or even self actualization through riding is something to show for it :)

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