… somebody’s watching meeeeeeeeee.
I love blogging. Love writing. Love writing creative nonfiction specifically, but it can be hard having all my shit out there in a very public way. Sometimes this is amazing, like in the form of friends I’ve met, support and love from “strangers.”
Still, I wouldn’t change my writing decisions. Even when it’s awkward, even when my family gets upset at me, this is who I am. I’ve made the choice to put myself out there in this way, and I don’t regret it.
But it isn’t always easy, even when it’s “just” about a horse.
In the grand scheme of things, blogging about Poet is nothing compared to writing a book about my dead husband or intimately describing the parts of my body that I hate. However, I’m used to blogging about Simon. My beloved Simon who could really do no wrong in my eyes (except lead changes, but I’ve long forgiven him) and was never, ever going to get sold.
Blogging about a new horse is harder, because I have to be protective. If I write little things that aren’t perfect now, it could easily turn into a google search years down the line if I decide we’re not a perfect match and he needs a new home. If I’m honest about some training issues we’re going through, it’s not long before my messages are peppered with advice. Some welcome, some not.
It’s not that I don’t appreciate the knowledge and kindness of others, but when you have a new horse and you’re trying to figure all the things out, I find it best to listen to my trainer, my vet, my farrier and my gut. There is such a thing as too many cooks in the kitchen.
What’s a bigger problem for me though is I feel a pressure to succeed. All I want is to litter my social media with blue ribbons, perfect portraits and all of the amazing things that comes from horse ownership. The reality though? Right now it’s pretty dapples, because we had the chiro last week and therefore a light week of work while his bones settled after the adjustment.
Forgive me for inflating my ego for a second, but between this long running blog and my work with TPH I feel like I’ve become a bit of a spokes person for, as I describe myself, the flabby, weenie working adult amateur. I did great things with Simon despite financial, physical and other limitations (cough cough lack of my own talent cough). Even when there weren’t blue ribbons, we won so much.
When I try something, whether it’s graduate school or a hunter derby or a new horse, I want to win not only for myself, but also for everyone cheering me on. It feels like a community, because we all know how hard this sport is. But so early on right now, I don’t know what Poet will bring.
For now, lots of learning. Lots of thinking. Don’t mistake these ponderings for sadness, although I am still sad sometimes. This weekend, I spent a lot of time grooming Po and doing this stupid little thing I read in a book (that now I realize was probably cultural appropriation of native americans but forgive me) about how to greet a new horse. I read that you breathe a little into their nose, so they can smell you and be one or something cheesy like that. Even when I do it, I silently judge myself but I couldn’t help it this weekend.
I scratched his nose, blew into his nostrils a little and whispered what a pretty boy he was and how he has the potential to be such a great pony. While I did this, he stood there quietly and wiggled his lips a little bit as if to say, I have no idea what’s happening but do you see how much restraint I’m showing by not nibbling on your face right now with my teeth? Because teeth are BAD and I am a good boy!
And I told him he was a good boy, and that I would never ask him to be Simon. Before I put him away for the weekend, I spent a lot of time looking at his dapples. I’ve never had a gray. The hair patterns and gradient swirls are so new to me. Sometimes I think that every weekend I go to the barn, he looks a little different.
Right now, they’re dark and stormy and complicated. They remind me of storm clouds and rain, which keep hammering the city I’m moving back to in less than two months. It doesn’t seem like a bad omen though. It seems like some kind of rebirth.