I hope you are well and life is calm. For the next nine days I will be juggling the usual life stuff, last minute paperwork for our closing (it doesn’t end I guess until the ink is on the paper), packing again, arranging utility changes and all the last minute things I haven’t thought of yet, but am suffering anxiety over. Don’t plan on seeing a post from me for about two weeks. Next week will be chaos and the next will be spent trying to find things in the chaos.
Every year, to get a discount on our health insurance, we have a wellness evaluation. Now D. and I live pretty healthy lives and don’t worry about this too much, but I usually get tagged for wellness coaching due to what can only be explained as a genetic cholesterol glitch where my LDL is just high enough over my HDL to flag the system. Any way, besides being annoying, I get to talk to a nice nurse three times a year about life. Last week was my first call. After going over all the questions and talking life, the nurse said something to the effect of, “sounds like your only real health problem is stress”. NOOOOOOOOO, really???
So in my last post I hinted at something that I was working on. This thing is my latest attempt at some stress management. Twice before in my life I have been in some very serious, super high stress, life stuff that took a toll on my health. This time I have been trying to, if not put myself first, at least put myself close to the top of the list so that I can keep looking after the people I need to look after. Last week we had to take Dad to the hospital again. I don’t need to be in the room next to him.
What am I doing you ask? Remember this picture from my last post. See the big guy in front? That’s Asher. Asher is my horse. Now, I never, ever, ever expected to have a horse of my own. When I was a girl and asked my Dad for a horse, I was pretty much told that if we couldn’t eat it then it wasn’t living on our farm. It’s another whole story to explain that we ALWAYS had cats & dogs that DAD brought home and we didn’t eat them!
Fast forward through about four decades. I had taken every chance I could to ride horses, but over those four decades it averaged out to about one, maybe two, horse back rides PER DECADE. AND on most of those rides I have been thrown off or run into tree branches in attempts to knock me off or taken very unexpected fast rides uphill / downhill to barns or generally had my wits tested by almost every horse I have ridden. AND I keep getting back on horses. Seriously, I’m crazy if you haven’t read this blog long enough to figure it out.
To add to the crazy, I go and marry a guy who not only loves horses, owns a few, trains them and at one point did endurance competitions that were 50 – 100 miles on horseback. He has some experience with horses. D. took Asher (then known very unimaginatively as Pinto – he’s a pinto colored horse) as payment for training Cinder (big horse in the back of the picture that we now also own). D. then proceeds to tell me that Pinto (aka Asher) is my horse. Nowhere in my adult life have I ever thought I would have my own horse. I cried. I still cry. I changed Pinto’s name to Asher which means happy & blessed. I still cry.
Asher is a Tennessee Walker. He’s big. He’s the Alpha male in the herd. He’s curious and never misses a leaf flutter, a deer in the woods or stick crack under his feet. D. says he’s gonna be a cool ride. In other words, I am totally and completely inept at riding my own horse! So I’m taking lessons. No, not from D. I love my husband and want to stay married to him. We all know that taking lessons from a spouse is not the best way to promote harmony in a marriage.
I have had two lessons so far from a very experienced rider/teacher/stable owner who is close to my age and has the ability to explain in detail what I need to do to stay on and control a horse. It has taken me out of my comfort zone, taken my mind off the rest of my life and focused me like a Jedi knight trainee. I wish I could take a lesson every freakin’ day!
Our four horses are at different levels of experience with riders. Two are veterans of the teaching ring, having put up with many students over the years. They have to endure my clumsy signals for a while yet so I can practice before I start training with Asher. He’s almost as green as I am. Stay tuned for more adventures in riding!
My goal is to one day, when it has been “one of those days”, saddle up my Asher and ride off into the sunset…watch it and ride back home.
Go do something that makes your heart pound, your breath catch and grin like the cheshire cat.
Back in a couple of weeks.