One perk of sitting out horse shows: meeting your friend’s gorgeous mare, Dutch.

As the most anxious of amateurs know (and I know you’re all out there), sometimes sitting on the sidelines is better than hopping on at a show. Sure, my wallet doesn’t disagree to sit shows out, but it can be a tough situation to come to terms with.

I went to a good number of horse shows this past summer, and only rode in one of them. That doesn’t mean I didn’t have a total blast, though. For me and my overthinking-at-the-speed-of-sound brain, grooming for a friend or tagging along as moral support is just as satisfying as when I’m in the irons myself.

As an adult, it’s hard to make time for riding when you have a full time job, bills to pay, and other stupid responsibilities that adults are supposed to have. (I need to buy my own groceries? And make edible food? Groan).

If you follow this blog (which you should—I heard the author is pretty awesome), you’ll know that as much as I love to show, the preparations and at-show camaraderie are what really make me gush with happiness. So why would I spend gobs of money on something that I can get for free, and even help someone out with in the process?

Don’t worry—my nerves still come out when I’m watching my friends horse show. Except they come out more as holding-my-breath-their-entire-round-and-not-looking-when-they-jump-spooky-fences than full on panic attacks. I can’t imagine what I’ll be like if my future child gets bitten by the horse bug. I envision those sleep masks you wear on airplanes modified so it looks like I’m watching. And wine.

Will I keep pushing myself? Absolutely. No doubt. But will I also listen to my brain (and wallet!) telling me to take things at a pace that I’m comfortable with? You betcha. 

Categories: The Anxious Amateur