FEAR was consuming my riding joy!  What were my first steps to Courage?
There are so many places that I could start this part of my story. I have talked about the accident, I have talked about some of the things I have gone through, but I think I will start this part of the story with Taika. I lost my big jumper in 2013 and I just know that somehow, he brought Taika to me in Sept of that year. She was three and had flipped in the starting gate at the racetrack and fractured her skull and ended up with kissing spine (or the KS was the reason she flipped, we will never know which).  Where did I start, where did I turn, what steps did I take?  It was Daunting!

1. Fix the Physical!

My fear of flipping and her terror at flipping caused us to be a great match for an amazing learning journey. First things first, almost everyone really thought I should put her down. My heart told me different. I worked with vets/chiropractors and a lot of physical therapy exercises to heal her. It took three years but she was deemed 100% sound. During this time, I had learned a lot about horse training so I would be ready when she was ready to get back on.

2. Understand the training!

I found CJ Corral, Carson James, the Buckaroo Crew and through them I also found Warwick Schiller (and a few others). These trainers and supporters gave me the tools I thought I needed to enjoy riding again! It certainly helped. But, getting on and riding Taika again was petrifying. She was scared and I was scared. Just about every time I touched the left rein, she BOLTED RIGHT. We had a LONG way to go and a lot of fear to get over!

I had thought training the HORSE was the answer, WRONG....It is part of it, but not the WHOLE it.....we left out the most important part......

3. Healing our emotions!  (Healing Taika's will be a future Blog post!)

Fear follows you, it hunts you down and surrounds you when you need it the least, or at least that is what I thought. Her fear, my fear, the combination was TNT. What I discovered was that I really needed both of our fear to GROW! I needed it to FIND my courage! I needed it to LIVE LIFE in the saddle again.

Finally, last August, I found the start of some help for me, my emotions! I had a lady help me with a process called Aroma Freedom Technique (AFT). My goal for the session was to enjoy riding again. The process we developed, was Thieves essential oil on the Left Wrist and Stress Away on the Right wrist. The left wrist gave me COURAGE, and the right wrist gave me CALM. This first step in the process of working on my emotions, was amazing and it STOPPED the Bolting Right, but I never understood the bolting right, at least not at this point.

I remember that day, the first day that we turned effortlessly left, the smile on my face was HUGE, and the relief in Taika, was palpable.

4. But was that all?

My journey continues. Emotionally healing takes time, effort, and most of all, it in and of itself, takes COURAGE. It is one day, one ride, one step at a time. It is understanding that emotions for both you and the horse flow, just like the tide, good days and not so good days. It takes courage to Not ride when things are not right, and it takes even more courage to NOT use FEAR as an excuse. It is a journey, and I have a long way to go on this journey.

I talk a bit more about my journey to emotional healing in a short Youtube video and it includes my latest breakthrough, for me, IT WAS HUGE. It explained the BOLTING RIGHT when I touched the Left rein, and it WASN'T WHAT I THOUGHT! To watch, Click here!

I love having support and supporting others with building Courage! If you haven't joined my FB group, Finding Courage, and are interested in a support community for Courage, click here!


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