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April 15, 2017: Failure

Everyone says that failure is a good thing – we learn from our mistakes, blah blah blah. Quite frankly, I am quite dubious about this assertion. I have failed at many things that I have set out to do, many, many things. You’d think that I’d have gotten used to this. Never did, never have, never will.

And so here I am, doing an internship at a horse stable in New York state. And even though I am well into it, and its going well (I think) I fear failing. And how might I fail? Ohh, for instance, not doing a good job instructing because I know so little. That’s the big one. I have attempted to forestall failure in this regard by jumping

out into the arena when Karol and/or Sally ask if I want to instruct.

Today I worked with three individuals, two teen agers and a younger child – and it was not at all easy. The lesson horse, Raleigh, he kept following me. This was after a ground training lesson in which I was taught how to keep out of my space. I felt like such a dweeb. The solution in both instances would have been to have the horse on a lunge line and a rider on the horse. I have lunged riders before, but it had been so long I forgot how to do it. So I said that I didn’t know how to do this. I was told that this was something that I’d soon be taught.

I muddled through the three lessons, at one point nearly falling backwards over a jump stand cube. I mean, how unprofessional can a person get? I actually projected more confidence that I actually had.

It has occurred to me that I’m in a place where I cannot fail. Or maybe it’s that I will not fail because those who are teaching me are so upbeat, kind, and generous with their praise. I know that I do not know a fraction of what they know. I have in comparison to them a thimbleful of knowledge about teaching. So I muddle.

As for riding, I am lucky in that Karol and Sally are allowing me to ride a horse who I know is quite wonderful. Gabby the Halflinger, I say that as one of the fighting Amish, she’s leading the resistance. If I could, I’d have her shipped to Alaska, to my place. Unfortunately, my place does not have adequate space.

Ahh failure, if I’d made the right career choices I’d have money and I’d be on the verge of retirement. I’d have a grand horse farm, one in which I would not hesitate to take in just one more. And Gabby would be The One.

Well, tomorrow is going to be an easy day, a day off. I am going to assist in the a.m. with chores and in the afternoon set up an agility course in the arena. And like today, do groundwork, ride, and do more groundwork. This will be in the Sunday/Easter holiday quietude of the indoor arena—or, if it’s a nice day, maybe in the outdoor arena.

It was brave of me to saddle up and ride Gabby in the arena, by myself, this afternoon. I did not fail at this. I could have. Maybe I should crawl under a rock. No, I’d get overwhelmed by the weight on my shoulder. I’m now going to bed and catching a few zzzs.

Next;106. 4/16/17: Internship: Thoughts of Home

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