I rode a horse today.
Yes. For the first time in two years, I rode a horse.
I took advantage of horse rentals a a stable in nearby NJ this evening.
The riding itself was a bit rocky. They gave me a school horse named Webster, who is apparently "known for being a butt" but extremely safe. All in all, he took good care of me - I remained in the (English!) saddle for the full 30 minutes without a problem. However, he very much wanted to leave the ring while I was riding and kept hovering by the gate. I also think he was less than impressed with the fact that I have totally forgotten how to use my legs. I can't blame him for that. I didn't even get him up to a trot - I was too focused on actually trying to steer and move forward and keep him out of other people's way.
But, it was amazing to feel that excitement again, to experience the sounds, sights and smells of a horse barn. Unfortunately, I've been unable to duplicate that feeling so far in the other activities I'm involved in. That's not to say I don't love dogs and dog training.. but it's just different.
Much to Louie's dismay, I pondered the rest of the evening wondering if I was going to ride for real again soon, as well as when and where that would occur.
No, I don't have to make those decisions tonight or tomorrow or the next day (or ever, really), but I love doing this so much and quite simply can't help but think about it now that I've gotten a taste of it again.
How would it even fit in? Would I be able to balance school, physical therapy volunteering, my honors project, and all of Marge's activities with yet another thing on the agenda? Would it compromise my participation in any of those things?
How would I afford it? Louie says to just take money out of the savings account I have going, but I really prefer to just use money that is being brought in now, from my newspaper route.
How do I want to do it? Half-leasing is out now that my summer is busier than I expected it to be. I can go for some expensive private English lessons at this place to refresh my memory and then continue horse rentals (which are relatively cheap), or I could switch back over to my old discipline, Western, and go elsewhere for riding. One Western stable mentions a work/ride program on their website, which could be of interest to a college student unwilling to part with any more of her money (and a person who enjoys mucking stalls and picking hooves just as much, if not MORE THAN riding). But that implies some sort of set schedule, which brings us back to question #1.
Louie felt bad that I had this all on my mind. I told him to not feel bad.. I am actually happy, in a way, that I'm this confused, because it reveals to me that I still really enjoy this stuff after all of this time. I am a horse person and that's one thing that all of the sadness, disappointment, drama and sheer TIME in the world can't take away from me.