September and October broke down to one thing: getting ready for the NC State Fair Open Horse Show.
It was that weird month were we would have super chilly, cold days that would send Athena into the air.
And then we would also have super hot, melting days that made you really question if it was September.
But we had a lot of fun. We worked really hard on her canter. It wasn’t going to be perfect but it would be good enough for an open show.
The week of the fair my awesome husband came home from deployment! I was over the moon happy to have him back. Then we headed up to Raleigh to the fair.
Athena was nothing short of amazing (as usual!). The first day we had showmanship and halter. We placed first in our adult showmanship run (out of about 9 adults). I was really happy with our pattern except Athena was a tad fussy when setting up. She is normally so on it, but this time she was dancing around a little. You can see in the video below! When we were called back for our championship class, she stepped forward in her pivot a bit and we placed 3rd overall. Considering it was only our fifth or six showmanship class ever, I was really happy with the day.
Next I did a ringside wardrobe change for hunter horses at halter. I was running into the arena with Athena putting on my gloves and fixing my collar. They had scratched a class that was supposed to be in between the showmanship and first few halter classes which left time a little short. We got first in hunter horses at halter, sixth overall in the halter championship.
The rest of the day was simply ok. They judge didn’t care for us as much, although Athena was performing at her peak. We were really happy with her, and so many people from the sidelines kept coming up to us in between classes, asking what her bloodlines were and not agreeing with where the judge placed us. That is the thing about showing though, you are paying for someone’s opinion! 😉
The following day Athena placed first in several of our Huntseat classes, even some of the cantering classes! This was the first show we cantered Athena, so she was really forward and not nearly as finished as she will be. I was thrilled that second day. We made lots of notes on what we need to work on and what she did great at. Athena had improved so much since the last show, and we could not be more proud!
The end of October marks Athena’s rescue-versary. It is hard to believe that this horse was once passed over by three people, no one wanted her.
(Athena was trying a new treat!)
I got super emotional around the end of October, reflecting on Athena and our journey together. She was abandoned, starved and neglected as she shared the pasture with the bones of her previous pasture mates. She was absolutely terrified of people and had the scars to validate those fears. My Athena. It breaks my heart to think she ever went through any of that.
Despite all those terrible things that happened to her, despite the deadly injuries, the negative people that surrounded us, Athena preserved. She has turned into the most amazing horse, who is admired and celebrated at each show we attend. She has turned into my closest friend, my most giving teammate, my once in a lifetime horse. She is so insanely intelligent, sensitive, and a phenomenal mover. She has unlocked the opportunity to pursue my wildest dreams. I know I will never own another horse like her ever again.
(When we first rescued her, and then one year later)
She is my miracle horse. My precious Athena. <3
Thank you for reading and being so supportive of Athena and I!
Read more about our journey together by CLICKING HERE! You can read how I found her, how we overcame an injury that most said she wouldn’t recover from, and how she went from an aggressive and scared rescue to a stunning and loving friend and show horse!
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