This… just sucks to write. And live. And just general suckage.

Doc’s retired from jumping as of Saturday morning.

Yup, still hurts to say.

What started as an appointment for, “Oh, I think he needs Adequan,” ended with “this horse will never jump again.” Well shit.

In the matter of an hour vet appointment, I managed to cancel two HT entries, a hotel room, an online order, a clinic entry, my team challenge team… nothing but ruthlessly efficient, I guess. And you know, cancel my optimism and dream of galloping through the finish flags at the KHP next month. Told you it sucks.

I went home and ate donuts and pizza and drank and watched TV and slept and tried to avoid looking at all the things all over my kitchen I’d purchased and was organizing to take to Kentucky. After 30 hours of wallowing, I pulled myself together, left the house and tried to be a normal person.

A hot shower, a good night’s sleep thanks to a hefty dose of melatonin, and a yoga class later, I feel a little better. Enough to think about what’s next without wanting to cry.

So next? Finding another horse that’s financially workable (horse shopping with a budget of… nothing is great fun), spending the winter getting to know a new horse, trying not to lose my mind in the meantime… Sounds like a party. A Halloween horror party maybe.

I’m not all doom and gloom. I’m so grateful for everything Doc gave me. I’m 100x the rider I was two and a half years ago. He’s the horse who took me through my first HT, who I jumped 3′ on for the first time, who taught me more nuances and feel than I’d ever imagined. I’m so grateful that we didn’t have the potential catastrophic injury happen on course. I’m thankful for the times he taught me how to let go and go for a gallop and just experience the joy of watching the world thunder by, wind in your ears.

Even if we did have the worst left drift of all time

But I’m also heartbroken I won’t get to have the feeling of taking a horse I trust so intrinsically around a Novice XC course. Of galloping down to a line that scares the hell out of me, only to feel entirely weightless and unable to contain the cheer of excitement on the other side. That I won’t be showing off how damn smart and athletic and funny my big red Saddlebred is at any more events. He may have “just” been a lease, but I love him as much as if he was my own.

And now, we see what’s next.

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  1. Ughhhhh I know this isn’t the first time I am hearing about this, but it all just makes my heart hurt for you. You and Doc were such a great team, and you deserved way more opportunities to show the world that then you got. Fingers crossed that TC 2020 ends up being a STUNNING success with a new partnership. <3

    Be careful though, if you take too long, May might show up on your doorstep. πŸ˜‰

  2. Oh man I’m so sorry to hear this. How incredibly disappointing. I hope that there are great things waiting for you just around the corner, even if you aren’t taking the path you’d hoped.

  3. Ughhh I am so so SO sorry to read this. Doc gave you so much, and it sucks to set aside such big plans. You have a great team though, I have no doubt you’ll find another good lease in no time.

  4. I am so so sorry. I was on my way to my show on Saturday when Emily told me and my heart breaks for you.All your plans. and poof. UGH

    I hope you let us help enable you to find something great for you!! I hope you can find another lease or even buy something that while won’t be your red saddlebred,it will still be fun and amazing as a partnership!!

  5. Oh no! I’m so sorry. This is terrible news. I know that soul crushing feeling of watching all your hard work and plans wash right away. You’ll find a new partner though, and you’ll experience all kinds of other firsts together. I hope you find something soon.

  6. Such sad news πŸ™ Sorry to hear… As much as it sucks right now it sounds like he really did such a great job building your confidence and making you into the rider that your next horse needs πŸ™‚ Go enjoy a few more of those delicious looking ciders!!!!

  7. i’m so sorry πŸ™ you two are such a great team, i hate how sudden this is for you. moving on from isabel under similar (tho not quite the same) circumstances was really really hard on me emotionally, almost constituting a bit of an identity crisis in a way. but… things have a way of working out, and now i can’t imagine partnering with any horse other than charlie. wishing you luck in figuring out your next steps, and sending hugs <3

  8. I’m so sorry, its never fun to retire a horse especially when on paper they have so much to offer and you dreamed so big. I hope you are able to find the next one quickly!

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