When I was a teenager, my parents divorced. It was very hard on me. I rebelled and fell in with the wrong crowd.
I would later look back on this period in my life and wonder how different things would have been if I had a horse to love.
I was that stereotypical child, asking for a pony each year for my birthday and Christmas, reading every horse related book I could get my hands on, and collecting Breyer horses until there was not a spare inch on my bookshelf for even one more foal. Unfortunately, I didn’t have much access to horses as I grew up. My parents always told me that when I was making my own money, I could buy myself a horse. So, years later, I did.
At age 22, I joined the Army. My training took me all around the world, but when things stabilized a bit, I bought my first horse. His name was Uno, and he was an off-the-track Thoroughbred. He was beautiful and so kind. I learned so much about riding from him.
I started looking for a trainer who could help me improve my riding and Uno’s fitness. I knew I wanted to ride English, but that was about all I knew. I met with a trainer who suggested I purchase a dressage saddle. I was flabbergasted. I honestly believed that ‘ordinary’ people could not do dressage. Dressage was for people in the Olympics, right? When my new trainer assured me that dressage is for everyone, I was hooked.