Challenging Authority

Chiquita halted in the middle of the arena. I wondered what could possibly be going on. I urged her forward with the click of my tongue and a squeeze of my calves. She brought her head to the ground. At first I thought she was just stretching which in turn made me think “oh okay, she can stretch for a moment.” Stretching was not on Chiquita’s mind. I look down at her face to see her sniffing the ground. What was going on with her? Then it hit me.


It was a windy and awfully rainy day. Not a thunderstorm or anything like that, just rainy and miserable. One of those days where you want to just sit in front of the TV all day and do absolutely nothing. The mosquitos were quite awful as well. As this all hits me and I realize something. What do horses do when it’s rainy, windy, miserable, and there’s bugs everywhere? They roll. A horse won’t usually roll if their head is up but of course I didn’t know that I had just started riding not that long ago.

I was too late. As Chiquita’s legs buckled me right stirrup came loose. What happened after that I don’t know. I remember hearing my mom do a sort of yelping noise and then I could feel ground. I opened my eyes to see myself laying on the ground and Chiquita happily rolling in the soft arena sand. Somehow I had managed to not get rolled on and crushed, but that’s not what had my attention. Boo was running wildly around the arena!! My mom was on the ground getting up. I was super confused. SNAP! I instantly turned to Chiquita because the snap sound had come from her. I thought she broke a leg or something. Turns out she had just gotten up and stepped on the reins and of course she broke them. At first she stood still and that’s when I committed my second mistake. I slowly walked up to her to grab her bridle so she wouldn’t be like Boo and freak out. I really wish I hadn’t done that. I made the mistake of coming up to her towards the front of her. She took off!! She went full on stop to Canter in 2 seconds and there was no way I could’ve gotten out-of-the-way in time. Heck, by the time she hit me I had hardly processed what was going on.

Ever had a horse run into you full force? I have. She hit me with her head/ body. I crumpled to the ground. I remember this intense pain in my head, fairly certain I had a slight concussion. I needed to get up, to find my mom and my sister who was riding Corey at the time. I look around to see blaring lights followed by a loud ringing noise. Pretty sure something was messed up with my head. My eyes refocus and I can see Chiquita and Boo going crazy in the arena. Corey was just standing there, with Kendra on his back, watching the other two. I was astounded. I stumbled over to my mom and she just had us block the way out so the two horses could get it out of their system. It turned out that the second Chiquita dropped, Boo reared up three times (he was practically falling backward) and on the third rear my mom slid right off his back onto the ground behind him. Eventually the horses were finally done running around and we were able to bring them back to the barn.

The point of this story is challenging authority. Sometimes you can, sometimes you can’t. I didn’t have very much authority over my horse back then (still probably don’t) which is why it was so easy for her to undermine me. This is also why Boo had to try so hard to throw my mom off because otherwise she could have stopped him. She has authority over him. In Corey’s case he just doesn’t care. The fact is, you will never have true authority from a horse. A horse ALLOWS you to ride on it’s back. A horse allows you to bring them into a stall, to groom them, and to do pretty much anything. If you think about it, it’s almost like a horse has authority over you!

A horse is the projection of peoples’ dreams about themselves – strong, powerful, beautiful – and it has the capability of giving us escape from our mundane existence.
-Pam Brown-

This is my horse Chiquita!

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