You can’t buy this kind of self confidence anywhere!
Who is this Kid?
A few weekends ago, I competed at a local schooling show, in preparation for the Waredaca Horse Trials (www.waredaca.com) in June. My daughter Grace volunteered, without being asked, to go with me. As we arrived at our barn TaylorMade Stables (www.taylormadestables.com) she jumped out of the truck and said “I’ll get Cindy; you hook up the trailer.”
Now some Moms might not like being told what to do by their 11yr old, but I just smiled and said “Yes, sir!” Why? My daughter wasn’t being sassy or disrespectful, she was in what I like to call the “horsey-groom zone” and confidently took charge of the situation. She knew what needed to be done to get my horse ready for the show and knew how to do it safely and do it well.
By the time I got my trailer hooked up, she had my horse in her stall, grooming box out, and was picking out her hooves. I looked into the stall and watched as Grace grabbed “Cindy’s” back leg, applied the appropriate pressure and said to my 1,000 pound, 16.1 hand horse, “Now Cindy, you pick up that hoof little missy” and “good girl!” when Cindy obeyed. Any why wouldn’t she? Grace spoke with the confidence of a 20yr veteran wrangler! THAT was when I stopped and thought “WHO is this kid?” and remembered what 6 years of horseback riding has done for my little girl.
For example, Grace loves horses and now would rather be at the barn than anywhere else, any time and in any weather. (As I write this I am in my car w/the AC on and Grace is out riding in 90+ degree temps and lovin’ it! You won’t catch me riding in that heat!) Ask her if she’d rather go to the barn or go shopping for clothes and she’d pick the barn every time. There’s that saying “better a barn rat than a mall rat” and this mom whole heartedly agrees!
Grace has also learned perseverance, responsibility, patience, teamwork, good sportsmanship and a great work ethic, but best of all she loves hangin’ with her Mom! She comes w/me to every event and is my personal groom. Grace prides herself on bathing Cindy before every show (not an easy task to clean a grey horse that loves to sleep on her poop), loads and unloads her from the trailer, picks her hooves and helps me tack up. Might I add, she does this without complaint or payment (except maybe to say that I can be her groom when it’s her turn to compete)!
When I have to go to sign in, I have no problem leaving Grace w/Cindy. She’s been taught not only how to ride, but how handle horses safely on the ground and its become second nature to her. She knows all the dos and don’ts around a horse and knows that I know she does. You can’t buy that kind of self confidence anywhere!
While I ride, Grace is my personal videographer; comments and critiques of my riding included, (sometimes w/a little too much enthusiasm). But at the end of the day, regardless of the out come, we’ve worked hard and had a great time together. And as we arrive back at the barn Grace jumps out of the the truck and says “I will unload Cindy first and then you can go and un-hook the trailer…. ”
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