I didn't start learning to ride until May 2010 and for the entire summer of that year was injured. My first year of riding was not that solid but since April last year, I've not missed a ride. I can walk, sit and rise trot, canter, and have started learning transitions and diagonals on a variety of horses. Come and join me on my adventures with my horsey friends all done with no sight on my part. don't feel afraid to ask me any questions. being blind and a horse rider is new, interesting and very exciting. So I hope you can gain something from reading this.

Friday, 16 September 2011

The Horse and Her Rider

I didn't think my lesson could be as good as Tuesday's had been but today it was definitely as good for different reasons.

I arrived at the stables and was informed I'd be on my beautiful bay friend again. I hadn't ridden her in a few weeks so was looking forward to this. I was then asked if I'd brushed her before on my own and when I said I had but not tacked her up and wasn't sure I felt happy tacking her up, I was given another horse to tac up which would be my lead file today. That horse was my tall white friend. I got a brush from the tack room and walked by myself to his stable, unbolted the door and went inside and bolted the door behind me. I stood with the body brush in my hand, listening for him. I couldn't hear him and for a moment I wasn't sure I was in the right stable, but I must have been, I thought to myself. His stable is in the corner and I was definitely there. And then, I felt a velvet nose on the back of my hand and knew my lovely white friend was letting me know he was there.

I brushed him and then the young lady who was taking me out today came with his tac and I placed his saddle and bridle on with no problems whatsoever. I was pleased I remembered how to do this.

The main riding instructor had suggested a new challenge again today. If I was OK without doing a canter, did I want to try lead file without a leader. I haven't been lead in walk or trot for a long time, around three or four months for walk and maybe two months for trot but I am still being lead for now in canter. However, I've always had someone walking alongside me just in case I needed them but today I was being given an amazing opportunity to try all of my skills out. I said, as long as we did the farm hack and not the road route I was more than happy to try this "experiment" as we call it.

So I mounted my bay beauty and the young lady who was on the lead file horse mounted my tall white friend. And off we went.

It was amazing! The feeling of truly being in complete charge of a horse. Having to follow and listen and guide the horse in the gaits and directions I needed her to go. I noticed how much she was responding to me, a slight touch on her side, a gentle pull on the reins to halt her; it all felt so natural and like I was with one with her.

A thought occurred to me as we were trotting down a quiet path if anyone saw me out riding with the other girl on my tall white friend, they would think, there's a horse and rider, not there's the blind girl riding that lovely horse. It was nice to feel like for that moment, I was one with the horse for the right reasons and the same reasons as everyone else. I was a horse rider today and not a blind girl who rides horses. That meant so much to me.

I can't say much more than my trotting felt great today, and my control seemed good. The only times I was given directions from the other rider was if there was a car coming and we had to move into the side. But the beauty was, I moved my lovely bay friend, by myself. I know for some that may seem trifle but for me it's a massive step forward.

Thanks for reading as always,

Until Next time,



  1. I've never read this and thought of you as a blind girl that rides horses! Shouldn't think the horses do either. Wonderful thing about horses is they don't care about trivial things like that! Just where the next carrot is coming from :)

    So glad you're back on track.


  2. Thanks Lorraine. It's funny, most people who read this probably don't either. But I know from some people who my parents and I know, think it's a little crazy to "allow" me to ride. I'm beginning to notice that the people around me who are also horse people don't think that way both in my every day encounters and my ciber ones. There is still scepticism out there but I'm just avoiding the negativity and surrounding myself with people who know that what is possible. And yes, absolutely true about the carrots. Usually get mobbed for polos but didn't have them with me yesterday. heehee ;)

  3. Lovely post Marie
    And yes, I think all other riders see you as just that - a horse rider. With the same hopes, dreams, frustrations and pure hapiness that horses bring to all our lives! Looking forward to your next story!