To celebrate the new look of Horse Junkies United, our team of bloggers take a trip down memory lane and compare their lives today to their lives four years ago, when Horse Junkies United first began.

Crazy how a few years can see your life in new directions. In 2011 I was fresh into adulthood, still trying to ride actively despite an old injury and seeking confidence and encouragement. In 2015 I’m still not very far into adulthood! But have added a few layers of life wisdom. I’ve learned not everyone can fight through the pain but some can rise to be smarter than the pain. I’ve learned that life throws some funny curves that you have to hold on for! Prepare for the worst and expect the best.

As HJU rolls into its season, celebrating four years of award-winning, grassroots blogging, I’m amazed at the people we have become. We are a group of riders who have very different lives, different passions and locations, all cheering each other on. We are each others’ secret sanctum for the hard times that we can’t share with anyone else and the cheerleaders across the world for successes.

So where am I now? not where I was headed just 4 years ago. Some things haven’t changed, I’m still known for my blog, “I’M OVERWEIGHT…BUT THAT DOESN’T GIVE YOU THE RIGHT TO BE RUDE!” but most other things here in Junkie land have changed. I have come to full terms with my 2009 riding injury and my 2012 work injury which as we have accepted finally in 2015, have ended my riding career.

10386848_10103542501835402_4351294778027277692_nNow, I haven’t quit, and I haven’t slowed down. I’ve just changed paths. I still take a halfhearted spin on a well mannered horse once in awhile thanks to my bestie who loans me one. What I have done is explore every discipline out there for a horse crazy girl who isn’t ready to give it up.
It started with a mini who showed me the possibilities of showing on my own two feet.

It led to a cart… learning that in driving I was no longer “injured” and that I wouldn’t have a disability (even if I did, ParaDriving is the most encompassing sport!).

My little mini took me down the east coast of the US and we drove competitively, drove in parades, we got into mischief, and we built my confidence up.

It led to a small pony foal who lost his mother before my eyes and needed me. Who showed me Dressage Sport Horse Breeding and how to live through my horses. Little PC has led me down the path of USDF All Breeds DSHB Championship for my registry.

Which led to wanting a little more challenge and a little more horse where I was confident and competitive. My best friend, believing in me, hit the road for a 3+ hour one way haul to pick up a welsh pony stallion who I can drive and show in hand and she can co-own for breeding next season.

12006495_1041941922506388_8211992673153283974_oAnd now, 4 years later, I’m still Lisa… just not Lisa the Dressage and Sidesaddle rider, I’m Lisa the pony lady who drives and shows in hand. Who puts her ponies against the five figure warmbloods of the world and never backs down. Whose days away from hitting the road for Dressage at Devon ready to run in hand, and is already planning to drive the spring season in Virginia though it’s the first week of fall. Who isn’t ready to give up thanks to amazing friends, instructors, owners, students, and my HJU family.