Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony. ~ Thomas Merton

Monday, June 29, 2009

Back to Square One

So just a little background on how I ended up with Cricket. When I lost Moose I had every intention of choosing "the right horse." I had struggled with a great deal of emotional baggage with Moose. He was an older OTTB who had severe claustrophobia issues. I knew this before I committed to buying him. The problem was that I had already fallen in love with him when his demons came to light. When I started thinking about my next horse, I thought long and hard and developed the following criteria and rationale:
  • Gelding - I had been told mares were more difficult so I wanted the easier sex.
  • 7-10 yrs old - old enough to have some training but young enough to be my partner for years to come
  • 15.2 - 16 hh - I am fairly tall and I want to learn some jumping so I wanted a horse that could balance my height
  • Color and breed were relatively unimportant. I didn't want another chestnut and I wanted a trotting horse because that would be easier for learning the levels.
All my carefully thought out requirements went right out the window the instant I laid eyes on Cricket. I was still fifty yards from her when I simply said, "Mine." So two weeks after I lost my thoroughbred I bought a 14.2 2 yr old QH filly. Brilliant! Not the shining recipe for success I had laid out in my careful plans for "second horse."

But God looks after fools and little children (just a hint, I haven't been in the little children category for a loooong time). Here we are six years later still together. Cricket has been the most phenomenal teacher. I cannot even begin to list all the things I've learned because of her. Sure, my journey through the levels has been slower. But in so many ways it's been richer. One of my Parelli instructors said that your easiest horse will get you through the levels faster but a challenging horse can teach you so much more.

So Cricket and continue to violate Parelli principle #7. There are days I welcome and revel in the challenge and there are days I cry with the frustration of it all. At the end of the day I know I wouldn't trade her for an easier horse.

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