One of my favorite stories my mom has told me is when she was a kid she wanted to be an Olympic figure skater. This always makes me smile and crack up because when she first told me this I asked her, “Wow, so you were really good at skating, huh?” And she would always tell me that she could barely skate, she wasn’t any good at it at all. But, in her head, as a kid, she just really wanted to do this. She wanted to be in the Olympics and compete as a figure skater and it reminds me that even your mom was a little kid and she had big dreams like you did when you were little.
I always thought my mom thought she would be in the Olympics to compete as a horseback rider but it’s just the figure skating that she wanted. Personally, I wanted to be in the Olympics with my horse to compete in jumping. We couldn’t seem to figure out dressage and jumping was just so exciting.
Plus, it didn’t hurt that my horse loved jumping. She lived for it, we’d head towards a jump and my heart would be racing and she just ran at it like she could crush the jump. You could feel her excitement, you could hardly hold her back as she headed for a jump! Every other horse I ever rode you would have to push them towards it, wait to see if they would stop at the last second and back out, but she always headed toward it like she couldn’t wait to do it. And I couldn’t wait to jump over the fences, the adrenaline was amazing, and our combined excitement was like bliss. My horse was a great jumper, so much more agile than any horse I’ve been on and she even jumped high obstacles with the same zeal as little tiny poles on the ground.
I loved it, I loved it even more with my horse because she took so much joy in it too. Out of so many years of riding and jumping I’d never met any other horse like in her in my life. She was a bull-head, with so much personality and quirks that she always kept me on my toes. She was a brat and dangerous as a little filly, rearing over me, and refusing to stand still for me to mount her. My mom refused to ride her until she calmed down later because she was so dangerous as a young horse. There is my mother, grandmother, and my grandfather were all horseback riders so I’d think my mom would want to be in the Olympics as a rider.
Of course, as a kid, I’m not sure if my mother enjoyed jumping as much as I did. I get a kick out of adrenaline rushes and I swear to you there is nothing more of an adrenaline rush then cantering your horse to a jump and soaring through the air with them. It’s amazing, and even more breathtaking when the animal underneath you is just as pumped to do it.
When me and my horse would compete in jumping she would be even more excited. She got a kick out of people looking at her, she even liked the camera and would even pose when you took pictures of her. You could even tell that my horse enjoyed the competition, she’d get so nervous and so anxious she’d be ready to burst and I swear I could just hear her thinking, “Oh, yeah, just try to beat that. I am hot stuff!”
I knew logically I could never get to the Olympics, but in my dreams me and my horse made it and we were kicking butt and taking names.