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Yes. I want an Olympic Horse

  • by Tracy Ambrico

Yes, I do want an Olympic Horse.

I’ve finally retired the dragon. And I’ve accepted that we are both entering a new phase of our lives. I would be lying if I said that was an easy decision or that it was made in a moment. It took me all of 2020 and a good chunk of 2021 to find my way and the path was treacherous and painful.

That said, as I come out the other side and begin a new set of routines with my beloved beast, I've also determined that I have another horse in my future. My goals haven’t changed and that dragon gave me the skills to continue up the ladder I’ve chosen to climb.

I am not “of wealth.” I spent the majority of my adult life in what many would consider a blue collar job. I’ve never been to the Hamptons and “season” in Florida is just beginning to enter my radar. I have kept horses in my life by the full seat of my breeches, but they’ve always been something I would engage after I catered to the rest of my responsibilities.  

Somehow, I felt the dreams I’ve carried my entire life were always just out of reach. Maybe I didn’t think I deserved them or that I wasn’t “good enough.” Now, in my 6th decade, I finally understand how nonsensical my approach has been to the things I want.

And the day I retired my magnificent horse (who taught me to punch above my weight as a rider) I was texting with a dear friend who I trust wants nothing but the best for me and has been along on the ride with my monster for the past several years. The retirement ceremony consisted of a short lunge and crying into his neck for about an hour when I realized the day had come and he was sending a very clear message regarding his needs.

My friend said, as we discussed what kind of horse might enter my family: “you don’t want an Olympic horse. You want to have fun, right?” 

Her comment, lovingly offered without any intent to limit me at all, stayed with me for a few days. But now I understand myself better. I guess that’s the gift of age;  we learn to listen to our hearts with more clarity. 

Yes, I do want an Olympic horse. I want as much horse as an anemic budget and a lot of ingenuity will buy me. Because this time, I’m not compromising. This time I’m going for the gold. The US Dressage Federation gold medal to be precise. And I need to find the right dance partner to share the journey.

And for anyone out there with something suitable, please feel free to stalk me on FB to check on the home I will provide. I have references, many of them with four legs and fur.

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