Failing Toward Success

I was standing in the Show Office at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival and the show secretary was looking for my Intermediare 1 Adult Amateur division test results. There was a glass jar with with sweets and wrapped chocolates. I picked out a chocolate and had just popped it into my mouth when the secretary  handed me my test sheet and …… a blue ribbon. FIRST PLACE!!  I nearly choked on the chocolate , coughing and spluttering.  “Are you ok?” the show secretary asked. “Yes,” I croaked. “I’m just so surprised to have placed first!”

C.S. Lewis once said “Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement. One fails forward toward success.”  This past weekend I rode the Inter 1 test on two days.  The first day’s test was a mix of good–not good–good–not good.  So on the second day I knew where I was going to have to make an extra effort and remain completely focused on the job at hand. There could be no meandering about. My “failures” of the previous day were my “finger posts”.This was the fourth time I have ridden this test in competition and Biasini and I are still a long way from having a smoothly successful ride. But we are improving. A score of 64.4% gave us first place in the Adult Amateur division.  There are some thanks that I must give for this success.

MY HORSE BIASINI

There is a video of my ride at the end of this post. You will notice the show is very busy. There was a Hunter Derby going on in the Derby field adjacent to the Dressage rings. The hunters were going back and forth on the passageway next to the ring Biasini and I rode in. There are also lots of horses going back and forth on the road behind the C end of the arena plus golf carts and it was a windy day.  When I first got Biasini he would have been very nervous about all this and may well have had a spook during the test. But now he is completely focused. He does get very strong in some moments but we both know about that and it is up to me to ride prepared for that.

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MY SUPPORT TEAM

My husband David is not a horse person but he comes to the shows willing to help where needed; changing water buckets, holding Biasini while I mount up, bringing a bag with  the ringside essentials ( water for me and sugar cubes for Biasini) to the warm up ring and he videos my ride. I could not do it without him.

My coach Lou Denizard is there for the warm up with the energy and push to get on with the exercises we need to work through before going in the ring. He is there at the end for the debriefing ; praise if it went well, encouragement and direction for the next time if it went poorly.  And…..something else….usually his assistant helps me with mucking out the stall and hand walking Biasini. She was not able to come to this show so Lou , my coach, came and did those jobs. How many coaches do you know who will come and muck out a  stall for a senior citizen student?  It is a life saver for me because as I am closing in on my 69th birthday I just don’t have the chutzpah to stay all day from morning to late afternoon at the show and do all those jobs.

My friend Nancy Kleiner. At horse shows you hear some pretty ridiculous stuff in the stabling area. Who else would I have to share some humorous chuckles with about all that if I did not have Nancy?  That is how to keep perspective and a sense of humor about the whole “showing” thing.

Finally my coach from home Belinda Trussell who took time out of her own busy schedule to come and watch me ride on the second day. Lou was warming up another student so could not see my test. At the final halt I could hear Belinda cheering so I knew the test had been ok. I was able to see her for the debrief afterwards.

Here is a video of our ride on the second day. There is still plenty of room for improvement . The shoulder in  on the center line is still a wibbly wobbly experience for us and there are some moments when Biasini thinks he knows the test better than me. But for the 4th time riding this test I am happy and I am looking forward to working on improving what needs to be improved.

 

*Featured photo by Kara Riley-King*

58 Comments Add yours

  1. HereIstudY says:

    You are absolutly right. Keep up with good work.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow! You are an amazing team! Very inspiring!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you so much! I appreciate your very supportive comment.

      Like

  3. Miss A says:

    Yeah congratulations! It’s not the end result that’s the goal, it’s the journey right but hey, it sure feels good to win. Love your support team . Must feel great to have such nice people around you and your husband of course.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      The support team is an integral part of the success and also make the whole thing a lot more fun as well. Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Avery says:

    I forgot to mention, which I know I have said to you before, I love your team and how you love and appreciate them. They are all so great.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thanks Avery. A good support team makes all the difference.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Avery says:

    Wonderful! GOod on the both of you! ❤ It was a very fluid test and you can make it even better, I know! Love the smile on your face in the photo ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you! Yes there is tidying up to be done and also some things that can be improved upon but for the 4th time out at this level I am very happy!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Avery says:

        Good you should be!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Congratulations, so well deserved!!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. NorCal Zen says:

    Congratulations Anne! That was beautiful. I particularly liked the extended trot in the beginning, and the effortless walk/canter transitions. Beautifully done! Watching the harmony between you and Biasini, despite the wind and the commotion, makes me feel good inside. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. You have made some very good observations in your comment and i am delighted to know you enjoyed watching the video. I appreciate your response very much.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. NorCal Zen says:

        Thank you for sharing your video. I really did enjoy it.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      thank you Danny!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. dray0308 says:

        You are welcome!

        Like

  8. Jen says:

    Congratulations!!! First place is awesome!! And that music is so fun!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      thanks! the music is just a You Tube add on but I think it is fun and suits the ride.Thank you for commenting so enthusiastically I appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Congratulations to you and Biasini ma’am.

    Like

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you so much Subbashini!

      Like

  10. Austen says:

    Ah congrats!! And such beautiful and heartfelt thanks, too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you and the thanks is well deserved by the support team!

      Like

  11. Alli Farkas says:

    How exhilarating to win in Florida with the big boys! Congrats…well on your way to Grand Prix!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Alli! And you’ve got it they are the “big boys”here. Devon Kane was the rider in the ring before me! The separate the results for Open and AA but it is steep competition. And as for the Grand Prix…..I shall continue to work toward it but that is a whole other level.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Wow 😮 congrats 🎊🎉 🍾

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Emma Cownie says:

    I am so pleased for you Anne, congratulations!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Congrats! 😀 I’m so happy for you and Biasini!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Gayle!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Joan says:

    Congratulations ! What a beautiful effortless ride!💖

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Joan. I’m glad it looked effortless. That is what we strive for in dressage although from the rider’s point of view it is a lot of mental and physical work. But fun nonetheless!

      Like

  16. Congratulations to you both!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you Sascha!

      Like

  17. Robyn says:

    Wonderful job!! First place, way to go!! Great job to you and Biasini!! You both looked really great in the video (and I loved the music 🙂 ) Congratulations!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thanks so much Robyn! I chose the music as I thought it would be a bit of fun. I’m glad you enjoyed it. And thank you for taking the time to watch the video.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Sandy Macfarlane says:

    Thank you so much for sharing!! I see what you mean about being busy; yet a great learning environment for you both. It’s grand when the pair of you can continue to work towards your dressage goals. I’ll turn 60 this summer and love being able to dedicate a good portion of time to my horse and dressage passion!!! Early retirement has been awesome:)))))
    Enjoy your horse-time – Sandy

    Like

  19. Katrin says:

    Congrats!!! Love surprises like that!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Congratulations! You both look amazing in the video, and I love the jolly music over the top to go with it. 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. I felt the arrangement of Scott Joplin style music would be good. I don’t want the whole thing to be too serious. I appreciate your taking the time to watch the video!

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Gymah says:

    Congratulations! You guys look great! Isn’t it wonderful when the hard work finally pays off?

    Like

  22. Judy says:

    Congratulations! Well done! Woohoo!!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Cindy says:

    BIG congratulations!!! I enjoy reading your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

  24. sandyjwhite says:

    Great job! Hugs to you and a pat on the nose for Biasini.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. sandyjwhite says:

        You are welcome!

        Like

  25. Congratulations and I like your “finger posts” philosophy – – Good for you!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. It is a good philosophy I think.

      Like

  26. I knew you and Biasini could do it! Congratulations! I love the music, too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      thank you ! I thought the music would be something light and entertaining. I’m glad you liked it.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. shiarrael says:

    FIRST PLACE! WOOT! Congratulations, that’s amazing!

    Did Biasini get a bucket of carrots? 😛

    The video of your test was beautiful. I can see why you two scored so well, even if the first round didn’t go that smoothly. I’m only a complete dressage amateur of course, but to me there were moments when the two of you moved like Olympians 😮 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you! you are too kind but I certainly appreciate your compliments. Biasini got carrots and treats as well!

      Liked by 1 person

  28. OH Anne, Congratulations! You both look wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you so much!

      Liked by 1 person

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