So fitting horses into my busy career-driven life ain’t always easy. It requires a lot of juggling and usually not enough sleep. But at the end of the day, when I’m tired and broke, it’s still totally worth it.
There are definitely some humorous moments in the chaos of it all, and I’m sure a lot of you horse junkie mothers, professionals, amateur riders can relate. Here are some of my more famous juggling moments.
Riding in Spanx. Or a thong. Or a strapless bra. This happens more often than I’d really like to admit. But in the mornings when I’m rushing out the door and forget to pack a change of undergarments, you betcha I’m trying to make it work in a thong and a strapless bra. Do I get extra points for being pretty good at it by now?
Conference call from the saddle. This has happened too many times to count. Usually when I’m at the barn I don’t bring my phone. It’s my quiet place, the one space in my life where work and home can’t get to me for a few hours a day. But then real life kicks in sometimes and I know I need to be reachable. There are plenty of times when my phone buzzes from my pocket and I cool out after a lesson or in between jumping rounds while talking to my boss on the phone.
Vet appointments on your lunch break. Scheduled appointments for the farrier, dentist, chiropractor, you name it, are almost always penciled in around my lunch break. That usually means I’m sharing a bag of carrots for lunch with my horse. And doing my best not to get dirty during my hour there.
Doing the ‘smell test’ like all the time. In the winter, I ride before I go to work as the sun rises because otherwise I’m riding in the dark in the evening hours after work. That usually means I’m in a super rush to get to work on time. So on the days I can’t wash my hair or take a full shower, I always keep a bunch of deodorant, soap, anti-bacterial spray, lotion and perfume in my car to mask the musk of the barn.
Apologizing about your car over and over again. Whenever it’s my turn to drive coworkers to lunch or to an appointment, I am always preemptively apologizing about the war zone that is the inside of my car. Empty water bottles, molding bags of carrots, manure-covered muck boots, that stale smell of sweat from the filthy, hairy saddle pads in the back seat. Yeah, it’s never going to change.
Bonding over horses. There’s always one or two associates I meet through networking in the area that are horse junkies like me. It’s like we have a sixth sense for sniffing each other out, be it catching a glimpse of their pony as the background image on their iPhone or computer, or spying an equestrian related tattoo, purse, wallet, whatever. They’re the best buddies to laugh and share our horsey-work related blips with over a glass of wine at happy hour.