OK, don't laugh. Seriously. Stop it!! It took a lot of courage for my behind to get up on that horse. I wore probably the worst outfit imaginable for jumping on the back of a horse - and capturing it in a picture - but, I hadn't planned on getting on the horse in the first place.
Yes. That's me. On the back of a horse, even though I said I wasn't in any hurry to do so...and that eventually, one day, I'd check my bucket list dream off the list to actually ride a horse.
And you want to know a secret? I absolutely LOVED it!
Ignore the absolute look of terror on my face. This was just a few seconds after getting on the horse and taking off...a little fear was to be expected. But, as I led that wonderful horse around the yard, I started to feel more and more comfortable.
My brother even managed to capture some footage of it. Wanna see it? Promise not to laugh at how ridiculous I look? OK, here you go...
Riding the horse I wasn't really that scared about. Nope. My fear came from actually getting ON the horse. You know, hoisting myself up and over. And then getting back OFF the horse again. The riding part I was OK with - even the possibility of falling off - but not being able to get up there or back down again plagued me much worse.
I kept imagining myself getting stuck halfway through mounting, and then the horse taking off. Or, getting off the horse, my leg getting caught in the stirrup, and then the horse taking off. Both events causing me to be thrown around like a rag doll until I either fell off or my leg was snapped from my body in a horror movie, gore kinda way. Thankfully, the horse was very patient with me, and didn't mind me hauling my big behind up on her...and stayed perfectly still while both getting on and getting off.
The ride, though, was absolutely incredible. Everything I imagined it would be. For my first time ever being at the reigns of a horse, I did a pretty good job. I walked her around the yard, I steered her around. I avoided freaking out and digging my heels in to her belly which would have resulted in sending her off on a gallop. And, I even kept a firm hold when she decided she was hungry and was going to chow down on some grass.
She followed my every move and every command perfectly. In fact, I confused the poor thing by my occasional tension on the reigns.. which made her stop immediately. That made me feel better, though. At least she had darn good brakes.
I only spent about 10 minutes riding. I would have stayed much longer, but with the tiny yard I was navigating around, I was a little nervous about the constant stopping and starting. I worried that I was frustrating the horse because of it. I know that had I been in a bigger field, I could have stayed on her so much longer.
After my 10 minute ride, the horse trainer asked if I was ready to go on a trail ride... which is my brother's ultimate purpose for putting me on a horse in the first place. He has this wild dream that he wants the both of us to go on a 4 hour trail ride BEFORE I go back to work in a few weeks.
Well, don't know about that... but am I open to going riding again? Absolutely!
I don't think I'm anywhere near ready to ride off in to the sunset on a half day excursion, but I'd be willing to spend an hour or so riding with him. Then, after some more practice, eventually going on the long ride. But, it will be a while.
I'm juggling the possibility of going riding on a more frequent basis... something I might do more often. Just have to figure out how, first.