Friday 3 June 2016

The Blahs

I've been riding and putting in a ton of miles, but I've hit a little bit of a low spot. Real life has been beating me up a little, as has barn life. Even with that, the main problem is that I am my own worst critic and my inner mean girl has been playing a ton of head games with me.

Riding wise, the anxiety from our little wreck is gone. In it's place is me thinking I'll never get better, I make too many mistakes to be fair to the pony, etc etc
So cute

The lack of confidence in my riding means I don't ride as well as I can, it means I get frustrated with myself, it means my coach is left scratching her head a little at my new inability to follow her directions...or you know, just smile and look like I'm having fun. We jumped a 2'9" course on Wednesday and rather than being excited, I was trying not to cry because pony is so awesome and I'm so sucky. Emotions, they stink.

Combine that with being a little burnt out from feeling like I should take every opportunity that comes my way (seriously, I'm still not used to having options and the option of staying in one place long enough to not need to do everything all at once!)  and I'm a bit ambivalent about the upcoming shows. I'm not sure I'm in the right head space to give B the positive ride she needs. I got the rather large bill from last month's XC schooling and show outings and I'm honestly like "whoa, I spent a lot of money being stressed out!" (Yes, yes I know, no regrets, learning opportunities and it went really well for the most part. I know no one really is looking at me thinking I'm terrible and don't belong I said, head games!)
This deer has been living in or around the yard for the entire year I've been here. She is very tame and sleeps near my front door. We have an agreement where I don't bother her and she prunes the garden. I call her Nibbles :)

Luckily, I've been here before and still know exactly where I want future me to be and have an idea of what I need to do to address this...

Where I want to be:

-I want the confidence that comes with feeling capable.

-Big goals: I do want to ride the pony to the upper levels of dressage. EC says we can reasonably aim for PSG, and I like that idea.  I want to ride her to pre-Training eventing and jump 3'+ stadium courses confidently. I want to get to Training or Prelim one day eventing wise (not on this pony though, she is fabulous but her big heart is limited by her size and physique)

Essentially, I desperately want to do it all, but I am your average not talented at all adult ammy with a limited bank account and time limited by a full time job and lots of other commitments. My strengths are that I am quite motivated, hard working, good at prioritizing my riding, I get as many hours in the saddle as I can, and have a great coach. Most importantly, I've somehow lucked into a super pony partner.

What I can do right now:

-Scale back a little with the shows and other self imposed time frame/financial pressures. I will sign up at the last minute, if at all. No worries, there are lots to go to and options every weekend between now and October.

-Keep on with the lessons. Slacking off there will unfortunately not magically result in me riding at the level I'd like to.

-Get out for more fun rides. Hard work is good, fun is important though, too.
Bridget  is having fun surfing in Oregon on our virtual adventures

-Continue with fitness. Better fitness equals better riding.

-Do for myself what I do for Bridget - break it down into smaller chunks. Go back to things I know I'm good at, and prioritize one or two things I want to do better. Work on that until it's boring and I'm ready for new challenges.

-This week: Work on relaxing lower leg and having pony stay forward. (Stop the nagging, already)



  1. I'm sorry you're dealing with the blah's right now! I went through that quite heavily last month (and the month before, and the month before) to the point where I doubted myself so much I considered selling my horse and not riding anymore.
    I've taken a few relaxed rides to clear my head, and remembered why I started, and all of the progress my horse and I have made.
    You jump 2'9, that's bigger than a lot of people would even think about. Heck, that would make me want to pee myself, lol! You're doing great!

  2. I am sorry that you are feeling the blahs! I can relate (except that I'm an emotional wreck). You describe yourself the way that I would describe myself. Take a break and keep riding. Miss B has no aspirations so she's good no matter what.

  3. I'm also sorry that you're feeling the blah's. I've been feeling that way about everything in my life for the last couple of weeks. Maybe feeling the stress building up to the show? I'm not sure but at any rate I feel for you. Take it easy, do more relaxing trail rides, and don't pick on yourself. You guys have been doing amazing so everything will get better again :)

  4. I feel like our motivations and reasons may be different - but the path forward looks shockingly similar. Wishing you good luck on it! Maybe we should just all go surfing with Bridget ?!?

  5. I hate having the blahs, but like with a lot of things and you know, it cycles through. It sounds like by your breakdown of what you want and can do that you will solidly make it through this phase.