Most days I keep my head as far into Rainbows and Unicorns land as it will go. Every once and a while I step back into the land of reality; and then quickly remember why I don’t like it there. I have to decide in the next 10 days if I am going to haul to Novice Championships this year. Entries are due on the 31st. It is not the $275 entry fee that is getting me down, it is the expense of hauling down to Vegas and back that I’m not sure I can pull off in less than 2 months. If money were not a factor I would haul down this year to have the experience of showing under the big lights and then plan to haul again next year with a chance of being competitive. When I think of not going, I feel like I’ve been kicked in the gut; I really was looking forward to showing Grace in Vegas. At the same time I also stop grinding my teeth in my sleep wondering how to pay for the trip. Ugh – being a grown up sucks!
Region 1 was a real eye opener for me. I did not expect it to be easy or anticipate winning before I went. I had hoped to suck a little less than I did. I didn’t feel overly nervous but the mare became stiff and tense when we walked into the show pen. This was after having some of the best warm ups of all times on the same horse. So something must have changed when we walked through the in gate, the trainer says it was me. I have to admit it was hard not to compare myself to the breed show crowd, I often felt like I just didn’t belong. This feeling was further driven home by a “new friend” that suggested that my horse might just need to stay at the Zone show level. Wow, nice welcome for a Rookie competitor! I know the only way to overcome the show ring issues in the bigger shows is to haul to the bigger shows. I’m just not sure that I am ready for that size of a blow to the ego again. The big show made me miss my small pond. Have I said yet that being a grown up sucks??
There were some really good points to the show. The patterns were the most technical I’ve ever ridden and I feel that I was able to rise to the occasion. I had an excellent trail clinic and wish I had ridden that well in my class. I was on my way to a great pattern in showmanship, until I questioned myself and hesitated. I think I might want to actually master the showmanship class, I no longer despise it. I was pleased with my Rookie Am pattern on Sunday, I wasn’t nervous and had the mare exactly where I wanted her during the pattern, I do wish it had stayed together for the rail work. I had the chance to watch some pretty freaking amazing Western Riding patterns and I do have hope that someday we will look like that. My mind was also opened to the experience of a red neck swimming pool on the day that it was 100 degrees and I will never look at the bed of a pickup truck the same on a hot day. Hmmm, amazing how much better I feel after focusing on the good stuff.