Tomorrow morning, I'm doing my first horse show in 6 years. Previously, I was competing in Novice Eventing & Level 1 Jumpers. However, I took a good 5-6 years off of jumping, & spent 3-4 of those years pretty much completely out of the saddle, so now I've pretty much gotten to start back over from basics in order to get my form & muscle memory back. I also went from riding my hot TB who needed very little leg, to now riding a mare who needs a TON of leg (& my leg strength & stamina is certainly not what it used to be)! It's so strange (& slightly frustrating) to actually have to really WORK now to get a horse to canter or give me a proper jump. I'm back with the same trainer I'd always ridden with, so luckily she knows exactly what I used to be capable of, it's just going to take a while to get me back there! I'm 11 lessons in now, & I'm making the 60-mile-each-way commute twice a week to ride with her, so I suppose I just have to be patient. Next time I decide to move away from my trainer for several years at a time - someone remind me not to!
So tomorrow, I'm doing my very first Hunter schooling show (my Eventing trainer thought it'd be a "just for fun" way to get me back into show mode). I'm doing a flat class, a hunter hack class, & 2 cross-rail classes. I haven't done a cross-rail class since I was 10! So while I feel slightly silly to be competing at this level, I'm excited to be showing again! And also nervous - Hunter judges scare me! Haha. My biggest fear is not being able to get Dancer moving forward enough, although I'm hoping the show environment will be enough motivation for her to be excited so that I don't have to wear out my legs.
Hopefully we'll do okay!