Marriage Counseling

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There was a time when I thought to get to a 4 star you just buy a horse, start at Training Level Beginner Novice and move up a level each year. And in a few years (that’s 6 by the way), you’d be jumping around Rolex Kentucky.


I didn’t realize the limitations in this equation.

And besides limitations like athletic ability, mental stability, soundness…….even if you have a rider with the skills, and a horse with the skills that doesn’t mean they can work together.

Over the years I’ve litigated a few horsey-divorces.

Some were quicker than others.

Please note that is a BITLESS bridle. No matter my tactic that was his go-to jump frame.

Some were more painful

and more heartbreaking than others.

Last summer I tried to partner up with a fancy young mare.

Needless to say we got off to a

bumpy start.

As a matter of fact, in 40 years of riding there is only one horse I’ve ever owned that has a higher “body count” than this one.

I officially lost count of how many times I got spun off Baby Seabiscuit.

This young lady is a close second.

At least I haven’t run out of counting fingers yet……

After breaking my leg & being grounded for months, my very first day back in the tack I fell off of her.

Next we went to a cross country schooling. And I fell off TWICE.

And then when this happened…..

I seriously considered a divorce.

While discussing a possible parting of ways the fearless leader said, “Look. What if I ride her and tune her up for you and see if that works?”

My first thought was……..

“I’m not a 10 yr old.”

In spite of the pink boots and the sparkly feet………………

And then I thought

“If I can’t ride the horse, I just can’t ride it. How is that going to fix anything?”

And then I was given some high profile examples of people that jump around 4 stars whose trainers routinely ride or compete their horses. And was told to

get – over – my – ego.

In the end, we decided to try some “marriage counseling” prior to commiting to a divorce.

And maybe I was shamed into getting my act together because the one & only time the fearless leader competed her……

He won.

Or for whatever reason, since then, slowly, step by step we’ve turned a corner in our relationship.

So much so,

that we’re about to move up.

Oh yeah. #MovinOnUp

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