The Relatable Rider

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

I have never been a small person. When I used to run races I would joke that I was not built to run, but rather to carry heavy things and bear children. I’m sure my humour was in part to cover up my insecurities about my own body, its shape, and its size. I would like to think that I have come to terms with it, but in all honesty I know that this will likely be a lifelong battle.

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

When I first bought my mare, Fire Foot MR5, as a two-year-old, getting on her back was the farthest thing from my mind. In fact, she actually stayed at the breeders for several months to continue to grow up and enjoy being a "kid." Even when I brought Fire home last May, the prospect of getting on her was no closer to the forefront of my mind.

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

The thing about letting go of a dream is that it never truly goes away. Looking back on that day in September, 2015, I was a total bundle of nerves and for good reason. I had just traveled across my home province of BC to “see a man about a horse.” Actually, it was to see a woman about a filly – a filly I had dreamed about long before she even existed

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

As I sit here writing this post, I have what experience tells me is a pinched nerve in my neck. After an unfortunate car accident three years ago I have a great team of therapists – a chiropractor, massage therapist and acupuncturist – and still I have yet to make myself an appointment with any of them. Yet recently I took two hours off work to run back to the farm so my three-year-old horse could see a chiropractor for the first time.

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

I have been riding since I was six years old, which means I have been riding for, let’s just say, a long time. Okay, I will admit that I have been lucky enough to call myself a horseback rider for nearly 29 years now. I started taking lessons after my parents got tired of me begging, and sent me and my older sister to a nearby stable. Once a week lessons eventually turned into working at the barn to earn more riding privileges and in general spending more time at the farm.

April Ray-Peterson horse blog equine blog the relatable rider

I remember the first time it happened. I was just a kid, maybe eight or nine years old. I had fallen in love with the horse at the barn where I took lessons, and now he was for sale. His name was Sonny, a small chestnut of unknown breeding.

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