Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015, the year of the - holy $hit, Theo, what are you doing??!!

2015 was an exciting year.  It saw me return to the saddle after a 1.5 year hiatus.  It saw the appearance of Theo, my new darling with all of his lazy quirks.  It brought in a new trainer, a new stable, and a new focus in my riding.

Hello, papi

It also brought the abscess wars, a lot of aching muscles, and the joys of falling in love with a horse I don't own.

Abby the Abscess

I couldn't have predicted anything that happened in 2015.  At the start of it, I wasn't even thinking about riding.  At the middle, I wasn't seriously thinking about competing.  Now I'm back in, whole hog, planning on my First Level debut and setting aside funds for our trip to regionals.  Funds that I raided today to pay for a new muffler so my car could pass my state inspection, but let's just ignore that for a moment.

What does 2016 hold?  Who knows.  Considering how wild 2015 was, I don't know what 2016 could possibly include.  I hope it includes my last qualifying First Level score.  I hope it includes a trip to Saugerties for the regional championships.  I hope it includes sitting trot and lengthenings and a cross country performance that doesn't have triple digit penalties.

With age comes patience and so long as I'm sound and Theo's sound, it will be a good year.  Ribbons are secondary to the basic goal of being happy and healthy.  I said that when I was younger but now, I really mean it.  So long as everyone is happy and healthy, we're good.

I have my conservative goals and I have some stretch goals to keep me motivated (Prix St George, anyone?).  I believe in reaching for the stars.  Even if I fall short, I'll still have a Third Level horse and my Bronze medal.  I'm just becoming more aware of how little control I actually have over things.  I can't control his soundness at the end of the day.  I can't control his moods or his physical limitations.  All I can control is me, and that adds up to only 50% of the equation.  I don't even have a majority.
Mary Wanless trying to bring my body under some sort of control

But I have a good feeling about 2016.  We've been working very hard on the foundations and our relationship.  I feel like we're on the right track and that our goals are very achievable.  I fully expect to be trotting down center line at our regional championships in 2016.  I'll be broke, sore, and tired, but I'll be doing something I've always dreamed of and that's what counts.


  1. What a year! I'm sure you can start the showing this year. I'll be doing it as well. Here's to 2016!

  2. If you aren't broke, sore, and tired, by the end you didn't give it 100%!

  3. you and Theo have gotten so much accomplished this year!!