It’s very easy to blog about all the good things that are happening in your yard and the great days you've had whilst out Eventing. But horses are horses and Eventing is a tough sport which has just as many good days as it does bad days.
So I thought every couple of weeks I would share with you some bad times and how to deal with them and how to move forward.
Eventing is tough and non stop, you're often riding for several different owners and on top of that you have commitments to fulfill with the Sponsors that you're representing. Social media is both your best friend and equally your worst enemy, it’s very easy to sit behind a keyboard and voice your opinion on a post about someone or post in a way that makes it seem as though everything is going to plan, But Eventing is a sport and a sport that is full of ups and downs.
In 2015/2016 I had a great season which saw more highs than lows, I represented my country on Nations Cup Teams, Won the u25 Championship class at Bramham International Horse Trials and to top it off I was selected to represent my country at the Senior European Championships which was being held home turf at the beautiful Blair Castle. It was a dream come true and I just couldn’t believe it was all happening.
Being the youngest on the team meant I felt a lot of pressure to perform I was competing alongside people I had always looked up to. I had a fantastic start to the competition, my amazing horse Luke (DHI LUPISON) was leading after the dressage, I couldn’t believe it. Cross country day came and the nerves started to build and as a result I had a fault on the cross country, although I was so proud of my horse you cant help but feel slightly disappointed. He show jumped well on the last day to finish in 21st position. It wasn’t until a few weeks later that I realised quite how well we had both done and what an amazing week it had actually been and the experience it gave me was incredible.
The following couple of seasons continued to go well and I was so lucky with the horses I was riding and the support I had.
Then I started my 2018 year, this was the season that taught me the most. I experienced some pretty nasty falls and I felt my confidence drop, but at the time I felt I wasn’t able to be honest about this, and had to keep going and acting as though everything was fine but we are all human and life isn’t always good.
A couple of yard moves later I found myself back at home with my sister Amy and my parents. This was the best thing I ever did. Some times you just need to give yourself a break and learn to enjoy the sport again, when your always putting pressure on yourself it’s easy to stop enjoying what your doing. Taking a step back and re-grouping was the best thing I have ever done.
Its okay not to be okay and to reach out for help and discuss the problems your facing. There are so many people around to support you, but sometimes you forget they are there.
The main thing I learnt in 2018 was to really enjoy the good days and never take them for granted. I also learnt it’s so important to support your fellow competitors when they're are doing and well but also when they’ve gone splat, as you never know whether that could be you at the next event.
I’m now based at a lovely yard, with a great team behind me and a fantastic string of horses to compete. I have learnt so much about myself and have learnt how to manage my emotions and worries and how to turn bad days into good ones.
Throughout the season I’m going to be sharing with you all the good and the bad ones too, as well as giving you some exercise and training tips to help after a day’s competing when the day you planned didn’t quite go as expected.
I hope this helps a few of you.