How to prepare for your first CT at BN:
- Have giant work project take over your life, including 10 hour Saturday and Sundays
- Temperature drops out from under you, making it miserable to go outside
- When you do make it to the barn, have horse decide he hates you and will only go backwards
- Back around round pen 45 times until horse decides that also sucks
- Now you can’t go forwards OR backwards
- Have saddle rep come out to try saddles
- …where horse immediately decides he CANNOT HORSE NO
- Repeat, inability to move
- Trainer has to get on while you’re supposed to be trying saddles… twice
- Hallelujah, horse can trot
- Canter is still iffy
- Remind yourself that you can trot BN and horse can get over all of them
- Hyperventilate a little bit
- Second work project goes from being nice, casual easygoing thing to HUGE PRESENTATION
- …on the Thursday before your Saturday show
- Cue anxiety that manages to keep you awake despite Benadryl AND melatonin
- Sleep is for the weak
- …or those without crippling anxiety issues. That too.
- Horse decides he can horse again, but only likes to canter in dressage test
- NOWALK NOTROT THOSE DUMB, HORSE ONLY CANTER, I IS FAST SADDLEBRED, I CANTER BEAUTIFUL
- Give up mentally
- Look at show day forecast: high of 36. Sob.
- Consider buying stock in hand warmers
- Figure out how many layers of clothing you can wear and still ride effectively enough not to fall off
- Get look of pure disgust from dog when you take him out at 5:30am on show day and it’s 15 degrees outside
- Wait until brain cells are frozen enough that you cannot be nervous, or frankly, care
Recipe for success, right?
Outcome to come tomorrow. Spoiler alert: I am alive.