My motivation has left me - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 14 Old 06-10-2010, 12:57 AM
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Location: North Carolina
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It sounds to me as though you are working so hard and getting very little back in return...just more work. We all know that horses are a lot of work, but usually the payoff is all the enjoyment we get out of them.
It sounds like to me that you have allowed no time for yourself to have any fun at all doing anything. You owe it to yourself and your family to have some time that you enjoy. You will be a much happier person.
I have been in your position before. I have 3 kids, work and horses. I put riding on the back burner, too. It seems like when you have so much to do, that adding riding in to the picture just made everything so much more difficult to juggle. I have learned though, just because I make a few days a week for riding, doesn't mean everything else falls apart. Just the opposite...it may be the very thing that saves your sanity....it definitely does mine. The toughest part is in the beginning and setting aside that time. Mind you, it isn't always pretty. Sometimes I have to drag the kids to the barn with me and ride close by. Your kids are 4 and 8...trust me when I say that they can entertain themselves for an hour. My kids spend time at the barn playing, finger painting,they have a tire swing...they have a slip and slide they can play on, sometimes I even let them play in mud puddles and they also have 3 buckets they can use for picking up rocks for when they decide they can't entertain themselves for an hour (after the first time, rarely will the buckets come in handy again ).
Also, if your children are old enough to be riding, then they are old enough to help. IMO, once a child is old enough to start riding then they are also old enough to help with grooming, feeding, watering, cleaning out stall, etc. Even your 4 yr old can help some. My oldest child has spent way more time helping clean stalls, scrubbing water buckets, feeding and grooming than she has actual riding. It has not hurt her in the least. Just the opposite. She knows that horses are a lot of fun, but a lot of work too. If I had my way, that's the way everyone would learn....but I suppose that is a topic for a different thread.
Stop beating yourself up about not bringing money into the household. Look at it this way, if you had a full time job, how much would child care cost, how much would it cost to have someone tend the animals while you are working and to keep house. Your job is the hardest of all...you can't punch a time clock and leave it...it is 24/7.
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post #12 of 14 Old 06-10-2010, 01:17 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Pennsylvania
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As a mom and a horse lover, I can totally relate. My hubs says that I can ride anytime I want to but I, too, worry that he will learn to resent it. Its difficult to cut time away from your family for yourself but it is essential to being a great mom. My mom told me once a long time ago that one of the best lessons to teach your children is how to love life. It sounds so simple and something that children should just know how to do...but if all they see you do is work and slave away, they will think that that is what life is about. Im sure that you are a super mom...you obviously care and love your kids as you want to put them above everything. You just need to move yourself up a peg or to from 'poop cleaner upper' to 'exercise rider'

I love the idea of taking a morning ride. Just get up and go. Its tough to get out of bed...especially since as moms we are by trade sleep deprived. Set the coffee pot, set your boots and your riding clothes by your bed. Go to the barn and do NOTHING but get your horse, groom and ride. Think of yourself in the way of a 13 year old with her first pony...explore a bit...jump a log that doesnt need jumped...canter in the wide open. Im sure somewhere in there is a little girl who dreamed of having a farm of her own. You live the dream, you just lost the girl. You will find her im sure...
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post #13 of 14 Old 06-10-2010, 08:42 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NC
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Thorn, I agree I am lucky. I was 18 before I got my first horse, even though I had been riding and leasing other people's for years. My first was a 12 yr old gelding that had never been ridden. Still have him, he's 29 now and teaches beginner lessons. I've always fixed problem horses and been able to do things with some that people said were lost causes because I took the time they needed, and once word spread, people started giving me rescues. And I took on too many. I overtaxed the property and myself. A couple yrs ago we had 12 horses on 6 acres, because I couldn't say no. I rehomed a couple, lost a couple to old age, and I have learned to say no, unless I'm sure I have room and time, but a lot of people don't realize that it's 24/7 when you do it yourself. No days off, no vacations, doesn't matter if you get sick, or the weather is awful, or if you have other plans. After yrs of "slave labor" it's sometimes easy to forget how lucky we are. This thread is helping me remember. :)

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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post #14 of 14 Old 06-10-2010, 08:18 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Maine
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I just want to say thank-you for starting this thread. Very good advice here and although my reasons for not riding is different than yours, some of the advice can be applied to my situation. So, reassessing what isn't working and will put in the changes needed to help me get back to riding.

Good luck to you, your plate is very full. But like so many said much more eloquently than I, you are so worth taking the time to enjoy yourself! It will benefit all around you if you recharge yourself.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the devil says, "Oh crap, she's up!".
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