Equanimity through gravity

I fell off a 17 hand cantering horse today in public and even screeched like a little girl when I was airborn.

But, it was worth it.  I got to do this first:  

Yep, galloping and jumping over solid objects on a good horse is way fun, and yes I have video of the fall and no, I’m not uploading my happy self launching in to space for ya’all to see.  I haven’t ridden Prelim level eventing in two years and today was my day to get to do it again.  I’m still grateful I got to do it, though I do wish I could have ridden the rest of the course.  The fall happened because I didn’t ride the 5 stride bending line to the corner correctly.  Eddie was a rock star, it was total pilot error.

My thoughts on the day

The Point Two Air Vest we bought me is the best.  It worked flawlessly, and because of it I am not sore anywhere. Terrific.

Eddie felt fantastic in warmup and on course.  After fence 5, the Otter in the Water, Eddie landed and accelerated like a jet cleared for takeoff.  He got back in the game of running xc – land and go.  Loved it.  He galloped like a rock star after that.  Part of me wishes I could bottle the feeling of galloping with a 17h thoroughbred I know and love, and part of me is glad that it can’t be bought.

I got to warm up with Ralph Hill.

I just asked him since he was just standing there.  He was delighted.  I was delighted.  I tried to pay him, he didn’t let me.  If you don’t know who he is and you event, you are missing out on a real treasure. Google him or get in a clinic with him.  Stellar guy.


I’ve never been a huge big fan of the poem “If” by Rudyard Kipling, except that these two lines grabbed me years ago:

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;

That’s a tough one for anybody and I’ve been working at it, seriously, for years.  I’ve been observing myself with this in mind, and sometimes I am better at this than others.  It turns out that internal validation is the key.  Am I bad rider because I fell off and got eliminated at a USEA horse trial today?  External validation says, yes, I’m an eliminated rider which is pretty sucky.  Internal validation says I am no worse or better than I was yesterday.  Are “people” saying I am a bad rider because I missed the 5 stride bending line to the corner?  Doubt it. Frankly, I’m noticing it is kind of vain to think people are talking about me at all.  Most people went on with their lives when I stood up and was clearly unhurt.  Getting eliminated is probably a lot more important to me than it is to anybody else (with the possible exception of those who moved up because of my elimination today, and good on them!  That’s eventing, no worries.)

So. to those of you who read the ‘RF’ today after my name in the live scoring, thanks for your calls, your emails, your texts and your genuine concern.  I’m fine.  I’m actually pretty psyched.  Why? Because I didn’t get hurt, my horse didn’t get hurt, I didn’t hurt anybody else or me by being frustrated or acting like this is a world-ending big deal.  I’m actually a bit proud of myself for that.  And I worked with Ralph Hill, had a few laughs with hubby Jay, talked with some friends and made some new ones.  And I get to showjump tomorrow.  Woohoo.

Thanks, ya’all.

4 thoughts on “Equanimity through gravity

  1. I’m so glad you posted this, Camie-also very relieved to know that you and Eddie are both fine. How cool to get to warm up with Ralph Hill as a coach! Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

  2. Great video of the pre-fall course – he is a cool horse! And great summary of the mental discussions we all have with ourselves on days like that. Way to keep a positive attitude about it and think ahead to the next challenge.

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