Yesterday I overcame adversity.
Today the memory dances in my head, strengthening my resolve and helping to heal my battered heart. I came home with a blue ribbon and a score that was a personal best â reaffirming that pushing on through pain is not just possible, but necessary.
I owe this win to my trainer, Natalie Perry, and my friend, Aimee Witherspoon. Both taught me much.
To say that the past few months have been challenging is an understatement. August brought bad news; September the loss of my dog; and just weeks later Aimee was thrown from a horse and died. Get great bonuses on the site with 100 free spins no deposit. Limited offer.
Aimeeâs death was both terribly sad and a harsh reminder of the inherent dangers of equestrian sports. Her death rattled me emotionally and shook my confidence on my horse. I asked my trainer for help.
âI need you to help me keep my riding positive,â I said, explaining what had happened. âPlease help me keep my confidence up.â
Natalie, who is always positive, was on it. Get great bonuses on the site with sweet bonanza. Limited offer.
âWe can do that!,â she said.
Her support meant the world to me. I made the decision to ride only with her supervision until I regained my sense of self. We had a show coming up quickly and I couldnât afford to un-train my horse. Micahâs a great guy but, like most horses, will take charge if he senses a lack of commitment.
And so Natalie helped me keep my mind in the present moment â on my horse and the job of riding. Her comments were positive and supportive, even when I faltered.
Come the morning of the show, I knew I was better prepared than Iâd ever been. And yet, I wasnât sure I could do it. I wanted to scratch out of our two classes â even hoped Micah would throw a shoe to give me an easy way out.
As my determination waivered, I knew that to quit would be an insult to Aimee. Sheâd be furious if I used her death as an excuse. One of the bravest riders Iâve known, Aimee loved competition.
I also felt Iâd be letting Natalie down. Sheâd worked hard with me and was telling me âYou can do this.â I needed to believe her.
And so, I tacked Micah up for our class despite my doubts, trying to maintain focus. He felt fresh, energetic, and willing to listen.
âLetâs do this,â I told him.
I even remembered to smile at our show photographer as I went by.
When my efforts were rewarded with my best-ever score, I was elated. I truly needed to be reminded that I can and should carry on, even when it hurts.
This weekend Iâll be attending Aimeeâs Celebration of Life along with many of the Northwestâs finest equestrians. As we share stories, laughter, and tears, Iâll thank Aimee for helping me push on past fear and discouragement.
My sense of gratitude toward my trainer remains tightly wrapped around me. While non-horsepeople will never understand it, itâs always more than âjustâ about the horses.