Ok, so I don’t make it a habit of falling off horses, but in the 20+ years I’ve been riding I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve ended up on the ground a few times. Most recently with my newest horse, Dexter. Dexter is a sweet, generally calm hard-working 17H Friesian cross. 99% of the time he just goes about his business, no worries. But every once in a while he gets the idea that something behind him is going to kill him!
This is multiplied by the fact that he is a big guy and I’m learning my reaction time must get much quicker when the strides get much longer. By the time I realize I can’t get him to turn and I need to move to plan B we are at the fence and I’m on the ground. But I’m digressing, the point isn’t why he spooked, or how I ended up on the ground. The question is, why is it, the instant I hit the ground the magical horse killing gremlin disappears?? And this isn’t something specific to Dexter. It seems to be common with all my falls, whether they are bucking, refusing or taking off…. quarterhorse, arab, warmblood, all the same…
As soon as I hit the ground, they all stop, and look at me like I;m the idiot for “jumping off”. They all stop and stare at me like “How did you get down there??” or “What did you do that for? We were just starting to have fun.” No more snorting, no more breathing fire, some even take the time to start grazing. meanwhile, I’m still trying to figure out what happened, how I ended up there and whether or not I’m mad, scared or just humbled.
I do appreciate the fact that, on top of being battered and bruised, I don’t have to go running after a crazed horse. But it makes me feel all the more stupid that the crisis is suddenly over once I’m out of the picture…. Am I the horse killing gremlin?? I’d like to think I’m not, at least not every time. Lets just pretend that they were trying to save me from a horse and rider killing gremlin and they know they can’t go on with out me… yeah, that’s the ticket!