I Believe You Can Succeed

Amanda - Beverly Hills, Florida
Entered on May 5, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

I will never forget the first time I felt invincible. It was one of the coolest things I have ever done! Although it was a year ago, I remember it like yesterday. It was the first time I have ever jumped on my horse.

It all started when I was getting ready to saddle up my beautiful chestnut brown gelding and go to my lesson. For some reason, it felt like a good day, the sun was shining and the wind blew softly. I had a feeling something good was going to happen.

When I got to the Pine Ridge Equestrian Center, my instructor, Ms. Ruth, was waiting for me, sitting on the steps holding her horse. She told me, “Amanda, I think you’re ready to learn how to jump.” I was ecstatic! I couldn’t wait to get started.

Even though I felt excited and happy, I was most of all nervous. I was scared because a few months before, a woman died for jumping a four-foot jump. Her horse hit the jump, fell, and smooshed the lady to death. He died too. Knowing that, I was petrified! I couldn’t believe I was going through with this.

First we warmed up at a simple walk, trot, canter routine and a couple circles. Ms. Ruth dismounted her horse and pulled out three ground poles for me to trot over. “He might try to jump over these, so just in case, hold onto his mane.” She told me. But, he just trotted right over as he was told. After I did those a few times, she got back down and pulled out a small jump. “This is a cavaletti. He will jump this one and he might try to refuse but just push him, he should go over.” Even though the cavaletti wasn’t even a foot high it looked like a skyscraper. I got up the courage, did my circle one last time, and went for it. He did it! It was so much fun! It felt like I was flying!

I love jumping now and when I see a jump I say “Ooh! Can I please jump it?” And when my horse refuses, I push him and say to myself “I can do it!”and it works! I glide over any jump easily. I put my mind to it and I succeeded. I believe that you can do anything if you believe you can.