Does anyone else love their lesson and yet dread their lesson at the same time? I mean sometimes it just seems like so much work!!! I bought Boo back in 2004. I had been taking weekly riding lessons for about 2 years. I had never really ridden before beginning the lessons. As a matter of fact I basically knew nothing at all about horses other than I was drawn to them. I started out on a pretty much bombproof grade mare. I think she was about 24 years old. I took lessons on her for a year, and then I decided to sponsor her and continue taking lessons on her for another year. Sponsoring just meant that in return for paying a monthly fee towards her keep I could ride her anytime she wasn't being used for a lesson.
On the day of my very first lesson I never even made it onto the horse. The lesson was all about grooming and tacking up. The next week I made it onto her back but I couldn't steer worth beans. Pretty humiliating stuff. Eventually I got to where I could steer at the walk but not the trot, and then I could steer at the trot but not at the canter. Heck, I couldn't even keep the horse in the canter more than a few strides at a time. I didn't give up, although I can't say I didn't think about it. Sometimes as I was driving down the freeway toward the barn I would feel sick to my stomach with a lowgrade fear about what was about to happen. What kept me going back was the way I felt on the drive home. After the lesson I would be on top of the world! I did it! I survived another lesson and I had fun!
Eventually I got good enough to start to specialize a bit in a riding discipline. It wasn't just about not falling off anymore. That's when I began to take lessons in dressage. I liked the concept of harmony between horse and rider. Little did I know what a complicated and difficult discipline it is. All those wonderful riders and wonderful horses in the show ring make it look so easy. It is not easy. It is complicated and detailed and often confusing. It's a very physical discipline. It takes strength and control from both horse and rider. Contemplating a lesson when I am warm and cozy and comfortable at home definitely seems like more work than fun. That drive to the barn still generates apphrehension. What if I'm asked to do something and I am not up to the task. What if my horse is having a bad day and I get dumped. What if...what if... what if... but that drive home has never failed me. I'm on top of the world! I did it! I survived another lesson, and it was fun.