How to Earn Your Bronze Medal…The Hard Way

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Purchase a green 3 year old horse.

Spend 2,093 days of blood, sweat, and some tears training your horse.

On day 2094, have a solid lesson with Ms. C to fine tune your Third Level work before your first attempt for your scores.

On day 2095, see horse walk funny.

Panic.

Poultice.

Sleep 2 hours.

On day 2096, see swelling along cannon bone. 

Panic.

Lunge horse. Scratch head. 

Unload tack from trailer and tack up horse.

Mount and walk horse, think all is well.

Take one trot step and know things are not well.

Call your vet. Panic when she says it could be a tendon strain.

Pretend to be cool when she says she is tied up and can’t make it.

Have trainer call her vet. Have her vet assess situation.

Have shoe pulled.

Trim hoof and hear all present say, “oooh” at the same time as puss oozes from the abscess.

Breathe a momentary sigh of relief that it is not a tendon injury.

Soak hoof, poultice, and run home to eat something.

Return to barn and repeat soaking and poultice.

Pray horse will be sound for Saturday, and sleep another 2 hours.

Arrive at barn on day 2097 with fingers crossed your horse is sound.

Watch horse perform extracurricular activities in his paddock and hear trainer yell, “he looks sound!”

Be very thankful your horse lives with his farrier. 

Have two new front shoes installed.

Load horse in the rain and head to show.

Arrive less than 3 hours before your first ride time.

Try to remain calm when it is time to get ready.

Have dear friend ask you where your hoof oil, hair tie, sponge, and tail brush are.

Shrug and blame the abscess for their absence. 

Have horse ask you to carry his head since he is tired.  Change from the double bridle to the snaffle and tell him to carry it himself. 

Run through game plan with Ms. C.

Have solid warm up and successful first ride with Third Level Test 2.

Husband calls the score as 63.5%. Actually get 62.564%.

Wander off and forget that your ass needs to be in the saddle for second ride.

Have another good warm up but questionable ride. 

Refresh phone 500 times while waiting for the score.

Husband calls the score as 60.2%. Actually get 60.455%. (Have husband briefly consider a career as dressage judge.)

Scream loud enough to have the show’s barn manager check on you. 

HOLY MOLY! Realize that you earned your USDF Bronze Medal!!!!!

Be thankful for all the love, support and guidance provided by your husband, Ms. C, Mr. D, your family, and your friends. 

Start dreaming of your Silver Medal…

 

 

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