Rise to Meet the Road

Watching JLE and Dandy run around XC and just be general badasses at E.I. made me realize a few things. The first is that Dandy really is an incredibly talented athlete that loves his job. The second is that, because he’s so athletic and talented, he’s always going to be a difficult ride and is going to require a lot of patience and confidence from his rider. Two things that I’m not always the best at.


But I also realized that I want to do this.

If I had the money, I would have JLE campaign Dandy and see how far he can actually go. He’s that talented that I wish I could give him a shot at the upper levels. When he was ready, he would then someday come back and be my horse. In the meantime I’d buy something that would give me the confidence and take me up the levels so that hopefully Dandy and I would meet in the middle in a few years when we’re both ready for each other. Unfortunately, while I could probably work something out to own and pay for the daily needs of two horses, there’s no way I can pay the show fees on two horses.

For now, Dandy is the horse I have and I don’t want to sell him. That means that I’m going to have to make things work. Already I feel like we’re making huge progress. Last night when I went out to ride Dandy, the baby in the pasture adjoining the arena was full of the sillies so of course Dandy became full of the sillies as well. He bolted and kicked out like he was playing in the field. I not only didn’t bail, I got him back together and asked him to get back to work. I was nervous but I took a bunch of deep breaths and pushed on. I did eventually have to take him inside because he just wasn’t paying attention to me anymore and I was all alone and didn’t want anything stupid to happen. But the point of this all is that I pushed through and I didn’t give in.


There’s still a long road ahead of us. So long that sometimes I peer down it and think “yeah, I’m not ever going to make it there so let’s just have JLE ride him and I just won’t ride.” But that attitude has to stop.

Every step forward is a step of progress and they’re coming faster than the steps I take backwards. It’s possible that I’m not going to be ready to show Dandy this summer but as long as we’re working towards it, I’ll be happy. I have to get comfortable on him again and remember how to correct misbehaving and work through it. Dandy hasn’t reared in months and he doesn’t even threaten anymore.  That’s a huge accomplishment. Now I have to rise to meet it.

12 thoughts on “Rise to Meet the Road

  1. When I started reading this I thought you were saying you decided to sell 🙁

    I hope that you can continue to learn to trust dandy. That said it’s also supposed to be fun. It’s hard but sometimes even if we love a horse they might not be the right horse for us at that time. I’ve seen quite a few people (myself included) with the wrong horse and it takes forever to overcome the fear that can bring :/

    As it seems you know. Not saying that’s the case with dandy because it seems like he’s definitely stepped up to the challenge and like you guys are doing great together just as a thought. Sorry for rambling! Looking forward to reading about your guys progress together!

    Also when does the saddle arrive :)))

    1. The saddle is not arriving soon enough! Being patient is not easy.

      But yeah, I totally understand what you’re saying and it still might come to that. But right now I know that if I give up on Dandy without trying (when he really has come so far) that I will probably give up on riding altogether. So I’m willing to keep working. The fact that I see progress in myself and how Dandy and I are working together helps. If I wasn’t seeing any progress I probably would be more on the “sell” side.

      I’ve got a meeting with JLE on Wednesday to talk about getting Dandy and I on the same page. Mainly, I think I need to ride a whole lot more than I’m doing right now so we need to figure out how to make that work.

  2. So reading this I feel like you are definitely ready to take on the challenge! I’m so glad to hear Dandy is improving and that you are growing together! Can’t wait to hear more. 🙂

    1. Thank you. It’s going to be a lot of work but I actually do feel ready to do this now. I wasn’t at the beginning of this year.

  3. You can do it! And when it stops being fun…it’s time to move on. The awesome thing is that you have a wonderful trainer who is putting further miles on him. Even if you decide to sell him, it will really increase his value and market.

    1. That’s what I was thinking. He really is such a nice horse and JLE is doing such a good job with him.

      But for now it’s still fun and I actually feel excited so I want to take that as far as I can.

  4. Im glad that you are teaming up with Dandy to kick some bootie! I am so excited to see where things lead and will be cheering you on!

    Like Hillary I thought you were going to say you were going to sell him, but am glad you aren’t- if you decided to go that way, we would support you too tho 🙂

    1. Thank you. It’s really great to know that you all know what I’m going through and that I do have options. But here’s hoping we do kick some bootie and take names!

    1. Thank you. I’m trying to approach this in the way that’s right for both Dandy and myself. It’s hard sometimes though.

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