I wanted to write this blog today as I know everyone has been struggling over the past few weeks because of the Covid-19 virus.  As I live in France I have been in complete lock down since the 17th March. This has meant that I have not been allowed to go see my horse Mya as all the stables in France have been closed. Only proprietors have been allowed to look after the horses. Mya is totally fine, she lives out and the weather has been beautiful here in Toulouse. I know now some other countries including the US have had the same measures put in place and people all over the world may be separated from their precious horses today. 

However even though I am completely sure she is fine I am having a hard time not seeing her! I wanted to share some of things I have realised since not being able to see her.

Horses just get on with it! We treasure our horses dearly, but having a few weeks off in their paddocks will not do them any harm. Yes they may lose some fitness but in the scheme of things their lives will continue like normal. We miss them more than they miss us for sure! Think of it as a little holiday for them! 

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We shouldn’t stress over the small things. I know before all this began, I used to fret about what dressage classes to do, how often I should ride. I used to put pressure on myself to accomplish this and do that.  It isn’t until I was separated from my horse that I now realise all those things don’t really matter. It’s having fun together that counts.

Don’t put things off! I didn’t ever occur to me before that I could be separated from Mya. I am so glad I started to do my online dressage competitions and start having lessons with an instructor again before this happened as I had put that off before. If this has taught me anything it’s not put things off unnecessarily, as now when I can go back to the stables I will be able to restart things a bit easier than if I hadn’t gotten going at all. 

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How much I rely on my stable time. I live in the city and I always said that I loved driving out to the country to see Mya 3x times a week.  But I really do miss being outside and out of the city. The stables is for me like for a lot of people my happy place, my therapy and my thinking time. Hacking through the countryside is the ideal time to reflect on things and I am really missing that! 

What an outlet riding is. Now I am not riding I am really aware of what other little exercise I do! I’ve had to make a big effort to do some pilates in my house and go running so I do some exercise. The problem is I don’t get the same joy I get from riding. But instead of dwelling on that I have decided on trying to stay fit so I can get the most out of riding when I return to it. 

We shouldn’t worry about what level we compete at. Before Covid -19 my main concern was dropping down a level in my dressage. I was really worried that I would look silly and felt a bit embarrassed that I wanted to drop down. Now, I would just be happy riding at all! 

How much I love my online dressage competitions. I was always a jumper and when I started riding Mya there was a massive transition period of not really knowing what to do to keep her and me interested, so we started doing online dressage. I really enjoyed it when I started but as I am quite competitive I found it to be a frustrating when I wasn’t progressing how I thought I should be. However now I can’t do it I miss it tremendously and have realised how much I love doing it. *Gasps* Maybe I am a dressage diva after all?!

How we should use this time to spend time with our other pets. My husband and I had a dog for 12 years. Sadly he passed away in July and I really wanted another pet. Living in an apartment it wasn’t fair to get another dog. Our dog coped well in a flat but I know that wouldn’t be the same for most dogs, so I convinced my hubby to get a kitten. It’s fair to say we forgot how trouble a baby animal is! We were shocked at her energy levels, her constant need to play and quite frankly found her a little annoying!! Sadly for Gwen she had very big boots to fill after our dog Ziggy.  However now we have been home with her we have bonded so much and we now love her dearly. She is a rescue kitten so us being here all the time has given her reassurance and she has calmed down a lot. She is my new best bud!

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We should appreciate every minute we have with our horses.  I always thought I appreciated my time with Mya. It is my favourite place to be. Now I definitely have a renewed appreciation for my time out in the countryside at the stables and my time with Mya, who I am lucky to have to miss.

It will be a tough few weeks for those who can’t see their horses or ride them like normal. So I suggest we stick together. Don’t try to deal with all these emotions alone. If anyone needs someone to moan to, talk to or just someone to chat with during this time I am here. Either comment on here or find me on Instagram @induehorse.

We can get through this together! xx

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