So it’s not a big milestone like six months or a year.
But Frankie has officially been my pony for four months today. The check was cashed and he came home on March 30, 2016 and here we are four months later.
Buying Frankie has proved to be the most financially dumb decision I’ve ever made. The most social-life killing decision. The most limiting in terms of doing ANYTHING ELSE.
And it has proved to be one of the best decisions I’ve made in my entire life. I’m more sure of that with every single day that passes.
I may not have much money in the bank, I may not make it to every happy hour, and I may pass up on weekend trips more often than not- but I also have a HORSE. A FREAKIN’ HORSE. (I was gonna go for something sappy and poetic here but seriously, A HORSE).
It’s only been four months with my furry soulmate, but it feels like so much longer. To celebrate, here’s some of my favorite moments with him, starting with that very first ride:
Hopping off after my first trial and hearing my friend whisper, “This is your horse.”
Blasting over a 3’6″ oxer in my second trial and loping calmly away as I grinned ear to ear.
Getting smooches from him in his stall on the first day he arrived home.
Hearing my trainer ask if I wanted to do the big course she had set up for our Maclay rider, because she knew I had a horse I could do it with.
Nailing that course.
Bopping around the neighborhood on a long rein and enjoying the sunshine with a bunch of the other ammies.
Jumping a full course in the oh-so-terrifying jump field in a lesson, and managing to smile when I realized that my horse was relaxed and happy.
Spending most of an hour walking and then feeling things click into place as he rounded, lifted, and stepped under- thereby turning me into a professional Grand Prix dressage rider.
Galloping through a hay field and feeling him having just as much fun as I was.
Nailing our sticky left-to-right lead change while schooling at our first show together, despite the ponies up our butt, water trucks blasting around, and loudspeakers blaring.
Going in for our first ever classic round and feeling like we belonged in that class- despite my rider mistakes. Feeling like my horse had figured out his job and was happy to do it and GOOD at it.
Getting the add-stride every time I asked for it in a lesson, even if my abs and legs were crazy sore the next day.
Working on transitions on a random Thursday and having someone tell me, “wow, he is such a cool horse.”
Telling him he’s a cool horse and laughing uproariously as he promptly nodded in agreement.
Seeing him be so gentle and careful with manfriend
Feeling the energy cycling beneath me up to a single oxer despite the heat and humidity, because all he wanted to do was jump.
Add to that to every time I walk into his stall and he leans into his neck scratches. Every slobbery smooch I get after hopping off and cooling him out. Every sweet snuggle when I’m grooming him on the crossties but all he wants is a minute to love on each other. Every ear prick when we’re going for a walk and he wants to stay at my hip the entire time. Every soft nuzzle when I take his halter off, but he isn’t quite ready to join his four-legged friends yet.
I bought Frankie first and foremost to be an athletic partner. He has a job to do and it brings me so much joy that he is talented, healthy, and happy to do his job. But he’s also become much more than my show partner. He’s the best part of my day and I can’t imagine my life without him.
This horse has improved my confidence by leaps and bound, and taken me further in a short time span than any other horse would’ve been able to. He lets me make mistakes without holding it against me, and then rewards me when I do something right by giving me fantastic work.
You all know how much I love Francis- I tell you about it several times a week. But I need to share how my boy makes my heart feel full to bursting and how sometimes I overflow into happy tears because I’m overwhelmed with love for this big bay doofus.
All this emotion, only 4 months in. This horse is so incredibly special and I can’t wait to ride through life with him.