Monday, September 16, 2013

The long and winding road with Diddy

I think we look good together :) 
A little over 9 years ago, I drove into the backside of Indiana Downs with a trailer and $1000.  Off to the scary Italian-mobster-like trainer's barn I went where he showed me 5 or so horses that I could have for that price.  Even though this bay thing was still in wraps from his last race, something about his face, and the little white button on the end of his nose told me he was the one.

Although I probably should have regretted that decision - after years of illness, special management, 6 meals a day, vet bills, well-respected pros telling me to get rid of him -  I show up at the barn every day so grateful that my 'first husband' greets me with his little hoarse whisper of a whinny.

He truly has taught me so much about riding, horse management, and loving unconditionally (me loving him -- he only shows his love for me when it benefits him. :).  We've been through some tough times where I was sure his goals didn't coincide with mine, but we've made it though and 9 years later, we are better partners than ever.

Prophet's first show! 
A wise employer of mine once told me that in order to do any level of cross country, that the horse has to want it just as much as the rider does, and that she wasn't so sure that Prophet wanted it at all.  There's definitely been moments where I've felt that might have been true, but at the time, I had no other option but to keep trying with him - plus he told the psychic he was concerned I was sad and that made me promise I'd never get rid of him. At the lower levels, P would randomly decided that XC wasn't for him, and would leave me cursing in front of small children.  However every since I moved P up to the upper levels (3 or so years), he's figured out this game and he wants it - maybe not like a lot of traditional event horses but enough that we are safe and semi-successful.  

But (there's always a but, right?) I feel like his desire comes from my desire therefore I feel a heightened level of responsibility to make sure that I never put him in a compromised situation (unlike Flash, who does whatever the h*ll he feels like, whether I want to or not! :).  So... here comes my revelation, and it's not one that probably means anything to anyone else but me, but I needed a blog topic for this Monday!

He wanted to jump bit way back then! 
P doesn't owe me anything, so it's time we have some fun.  He's not going to be an Advanced horse.  Not to say that we couldn't get around an Advanced level course, but that's not something I want to 'just get around'.  He's given me a couple of top 5 placings at Intermediate, and I hope for several more, but I'm going to be very selective about the courses I choose.  Plus, prelim jumps are big enough to have fun over without the green feeling tummy.

My sweet boy
AND we are going to do other fun stuff.  Goals for the rest of the year include getting our BLING on going western pleasure at the Thoroughbred Celebration Horse Show (in addition to dressage, jumpers, and a CT), AND participating in the $10,000 Hunter Derby at the Duke Benefit H/J show.  We also will be going to Georgia to run around a preliminary, and hopefully making the drive across NC to run Intermediate in the mountains of River Glen.

Pretty much I'm going to have the best time I can with my amazingly awesome boy and not put so much pressure on ourselves. 

p.s.  We'll be doing a pretty cool t-shirt fundraiser for the Duke show - details to be announced soon!

1 comment:

Karen said...

Love it! :) I love FB stalking you and PDiddy's shows and progress. You should be proud of him and yourself. You make each other better, it seems.