I’m a wimp.

When did I become such a wimp when it came to riding? I don’t even recognize myself right now. It’s pathetic.

I know the answer to that question. I more or less became a wimp after getting kicked in the head by Hayley a couple of years ago. It wasn’t a riding injury (I was untying a hay net from the run in shed), but it did result in a serious concussion that took way too long to truly heal (2 months before I stopped regularly losing words and a year before i felt mostly normal). I’m just way more timid since that incident. Not so much on the ground, but riding (It didn’t help that my doctor more or less told me not to get another concussion or else we would need to discuss lifestyle changes). At the end of the day, I’m afraid to get hurt.

It wasn’t as bad last year as I know I was riding more. I would still at times get nervous on Subi, but I did ride. I didn’t do a lot, but I’d get on and ride. Usually in the round pen, but I still rode. Then, the rest of the time, I rode Batt. He’s as bombproof as they come and not really talented enough to buck. He was my confidence builder and a good confidence builder he was (he also strengthened my leg).

Keeping the horses at home hasn’t help my lack of confidence/riding time, but I really wouldn’t change it for the world. I love having them outside and seeing them everyday. Having no good place to ride however… If we can solve our truck issue and I can find enough money for lessons AND find someone willing to work with me on an every other week basis (I know I can’t afford more than that), maybe thing will change. But, I have work to do first.

Meanwhile, I’ve been dealing with soundness issues with Batt and haven’t been able to really do anything with him. On top of that, Subi has become extremely herd bound without Hayley and pretty much has a suicidal panic attack when I take Batt out of the field to work. I can’t safely work Batt unless I keep in the yard next to the field where Subi can see him (I’m not willing to risk Subi actually killing himself which is a possibility after, when locked in the shed stall, he spent 10-15 minutes banging his head against a wall in panic). But it’s a bad place to work (not to mention lack of sound horse). We’re in the process of finding a mini which should help. Subi is fine leaving Batt when it’s his turn to work and Batt really doesn’t care (he calls occasionally, but that’s about it).

I know if I can start riding Batt more, I’ll be more confident on Subi. I know if I then ride Subi more, I’ll be better as well. I know if  can throw some lessons in on Subi, that will really help. But, reality and finances and time and work still exist. At this point, I just want Batt sound enough to haul out and trail ride. He loves trails and we’d both have fun.

So, most of my riding comes on my thoroughbred. He can be a nut and he can buck (heals over head), but he’s more or less a good guy. He’s also 18 at this point and regardless of whether I ever get comfortable with him again, he’s with me till the end (I’ve had him 10 years at this point). Back when we were in a routine with a trainer, I was confidently schooling 2’9″/3′ but I’ve never been a brave rider over fences. I just think too much. I need 2-3 lessons a week to be confident over fences over 2′ and I’m OK with not getting back to that. But, I’ve always been good on the flat and love flat work. I’ve just lost it all! And it’s so frustrating.

I decided to ride tonight now that the horrible heat is gone. I haven’t ridden Subi in a couple of weeks (heat, rain/storms, vacation). I started longing in the round pen and he was dead. I got on a could barely keep him trotting he was dead. He was bored as well so after trotting around for a few minutes, I decided to try riding on the hill by the driveway. Batt loves it, but other than walks with Batt, I haven’t actually ridden Subi there.  I wanted to and was scared to death (he also spooked at a bird right before we left the pen and I could tell just how loose I was). But we left the round pen and walked up to the driveway (this part was a struggle and did include some backing before we made it the 50 feet to the driveway). I made my husband walk with us (not leading, but just walking near) and we walked up and down and again, my wonderful horse what I asked, but I was a nervous wreck. I finally worked up the courage to trot up the hill a few times and again, we were fine, but again, crazy nerves. I trotted about 4-5 times and called it a day. He seemed to enjoy himself and never once did anything stupid. So why can’t I relax and trust my horse? He’s giving me no reason not to trust him and yet I don’t. He’s a good boy and likes having a job and I’m just a wimp. When did this happen?

One thought on “I’m a wimp.

  1. ugh the fear is so real, and so insidious, and it really makes no sense and we’ll all drive ourselves crazy trying to figure out where it came from or why it exists (ask me how i know!). i’m sorry that you’re dealing with this now, compounded with your own past injuries, and unfavorable herd and riding conditions. don’t beat yourself up tho – taking that little ride up and down the driveway even tho you were scared is kind of a big deal! the relaxation and trust thing can take a while to redevelop – but it really truly can be rebuilt!! – so just give yourself time!

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