I have seen many articles as of recently that portray the sport as an impossible endeavor that is too expensive, too stressful, and basically soul crushing. While dressage has it moments of all of those things, I do not believe we should overly discuss post discusses why.
I love the fact that other riders are more freely sharing the struggle. It makes us realize that we are not alone in this world and that just because we struggle, doesn’t mean we are not talented. That is so important to know. Struggle does not equal lack of talent. When you see top riders such as Steffen Peters come out about his mental struggles, as well as many others who we admire, we realize this very fact. Repeat after me… “talent still struggles.”
I was getting sucked into reading about everyone’s struggles and then the large influx of rider’s taking their own lives. I was reading each article I saw and started to realize that my faith and hope for the future was fading.
This was happening because negative breeds negative. I realized that I had to tune out the large number of articles and posts being released.
We do not have anything if we do not have faith. Negativity and dwelling on what is wrong with the sport will only diminish our ability to hold onto faith. Now, I do not mean to say that we should be ignorant. It is not all roses; it is hard work (though hard work does not seem a large enough term.) When I realized that EVERYONE was basically having the same struggles, I had to accept the struggles as a reality of the sport. They are steps we all must take to make goals come to pass. They are not something to dwell on and constantly complain about. Complaining is a huge waste of time.
Let us start focusing on solutions and taking each step as it approaches. Always having FAITH that we will be presented with the tools to overcome.
I wanted to share a few of my FAITH moments
When I had stopped looking for my next horse and decided to just wait, Furst Dance “Felix” came into my life. I was a blessing to his former owner, and she was a blessing to me (another understatement). Not to mention that the whole thing was orchestrated by our equine body worker.
Once I had Felix in my life, the universe gave me a coach to go with it. Making sure that I had the tools I needed to continue his work in the best direction possible.
My left hip has been giving me troubles. I spent over a year trying to figure out why and then find the tools to fix it. On this journey, I learned so many things about the human body, that I was able to carry this knowledge into other aspects of my riding and teaching. I then had the realization that I was injuring it by mounting horses all day long. I tried changing the way I mounted, but the efforts were not working and incredibly awkward. Exactly 4 days later my coach brought her massive mounting block and allowed me to place myself directly on top of my horse. I have now found myself on the road to recovery and already have much less pain.
We need to realize when we are being offered exactly what we need and be tremendously grateful. If we only focus on why it is so hard, then solutions never find a way in. Make room for what you need by having knowledge of the problem, but not dwelling on the problem. Make room for what you need by having FAITH that your DESIRE is stronger than any problem you face.
Desire and Faith are THE reasons you will succeed. Be grateful and carry on. What happens to you always has the right timing, just be patient and for the love of the sport hang in there. You ride horses, you are stronger than problems.