This article first appeared in the October 2015 issue of Heels Down Magazine. For more stories worth reading, subscribe now in the app and get a new issue delivered every month.


By Carla Lake

Riders are a passionate bunch who will do whatever it takes to reach their dreams. Sometimes, though, that means riders’ decision-making skills are a little out of whack with the rest of the world. Such as…

When your horse has a bucking bronco moment, somersaulting your body into the stratosphere only to crash back to earth in a pile of manure…and your main concern is whether he might have a back problem.

When you shower before going to the barn.

When you consider $50 jeans expensive, but $200 breeches an investment.

When you call a horizontal jump a vertical.

When you fall off the horse and get right back on. That’s the concussion speaking.

When you meticulously examine your horse’s legs for heat, cuts, or bumps daily, but you think nothing of that disturbing clicking noise your own knees make.

When you say, “Oh yeah, I decided to go to school online so I could ride more,” and you get blank looks of total non-comprehension.

You consider mac ‘n cheese and Ramen to be a balanced diet, but your horse’s diet was formulated by a professional equine nutritionist.

When you make sure the barn looks immaculate every day, yet your house is piling up with pizza boxes, pet hair and all kinds of other things you just don’t have time to deal with, like bills.

When you need to make monthly payments on your dream saddle from France, but you bought your junker of a car outright from some guy on Craigslist.

When you can barely drag yourself out of bed on the weekdays, yet you have no problem waking up before dawn on a weekend to muck stalls.

When you go to work or school with a burning fever because you used up all your sick days going to horse shows.

When you have no fear soaring through the air on the back of a 1000+ pound beast, but the thought of making a budget fills you with dread.

What horse-crazed decisions have you made lately?

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