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Can you really balance being an equestrian & a new mum?

I haven’t really talked much about my pregnancy here… after all, a blog about Spike isn’t really the place, but as our due date draws nearer and nearer…  oops; this bit was written before bub was born… so, correction, as I sit here staring at my sleeping newborn I am still wondering more about how I’m going to balance life with a newborn and being an equestrian.

It was pretty easy to do horse related activities while pregnant – I was feeding Spike his dinner every day, grooming him, bathing him etc… but now that bubs here I know it’s going to be more difficult to fit “Spike time” into my schedule. This is my first baby so I can’t talk from prior experience but I know from this first week with her that it is hard work – I know it’s going to take up a lot of my time (okay, all of my time) and to be honest part of me is a little bit sad about that. As excited as I am for this new chapter of my life, I’m also sad for how things are going to change and it’s made me wonder…

Is it really possible to balance being an equestrian & a new mum?

balance being an equestrian & a new mum

I’m going to have to get back to you about whether I think it’s possible, because like I said, no previous experience here! But, in order to help me ‘manage’ my life and my time as both a new mum and an equestrian I thought that I would put together a series of ‘goals’ for 2017. A list of things I want to accomplish with Spike, as an equestrian, outside of being someone’s parent.

While I truly believe that your life and your priorities change after you have a baby (it’s true what they say – they do become your entire world), I also truly believe that it’s important to stay true to who you are and make time for the things that made you the happiest before you become responsible for someone else – in the interest of one’s mental health, and all that!

So here they are, my 2017 goals and how I plan to balance life as an equestrian and a new mum (or at least try to)…

  • Bring Spike back into regular work. Spike has enjoyed the last 8-9 months being what I like to call ‘semi-retired’ so the goal for the first part of 2017 is to bring him back into regular work. The plan is to go through all his ground work again before we start riding because I like to make sure he’s good on the ground before I attempt anything under saddle.
  • Ride at least once per week. Once Spike has been through all the groundwork training again I would really like to attempt getting out to ride him at least once per week. I am hopeful that I’ll be able to find a few hours out of the week to ride him and we have family who can babysit for us so this seems like an achievable goal.
  • Find a good trainer. I’d like to start working with a trainer, maybe taking a lesson each fortnight (time permitting of course. The ultimate goal is to try and get out to at least one competition during 2017 and I don’t think that’d be possible for me (or Spike) without the help of a trainer.
  • Attend one local dressage comp OR online comp. By the end of 2017, I would have liked to have attended at least one local comp or competed in one of those online competitions (you know, the ones where your record yourself doing a test and submit it and then you’re judged against everyone else who enters… it’s competing without the stress of actually having to leave the barn to compete!). Either way, if I can manage one of those by the 31st of December 2017, I’ll be a happy chappy!

Before I go, you may have also noticed a new little addition elsewhere, in the form of a new blog header?

If you’ve not you can either scroll up or if you don’t want to lose your spot, then here’s a little something I prepared earlier:

balance being an equestrian & a new mum

One really simple way I am hoping to more easily integrate a baby into the equestrian world I’ve created both in real life and on the blog is by being more open about juggling a baby and horse riding. Brunette in Breeches isn’t going to change – don’t worry – but there will be some more personal posts over the next 12 months, and I’m hoping that a lot of you will be able to relate to them… as I am sure you are all juggling some aspect of your life, whether it be a baby or a career or school, with riding.

Until next time, happy riding x

Spike

3 Comments

  • Reply Sharon S. (SS)

    I can kind of relate (myself being a new mom as well) with balancing being a mom with Art. I’ve found that the best time to do these are while my son is napping or sleeping. That’s when I have my “me” time haha.

    Mar 23 at Mar 23
  • Reply Heather Wallace

    I’m a mother of three and didn’t get back into horses until after my first was a few months old. It’s so important to have something for yourself. BUT give your self time to adjust too. It’s going to take a while to find that balance. I think starting off with regular groundwork and then riding once a week is a great idea. Motherhood is important, but so is having something for YOU. My kids are happy because I’m happy and often come with me to the barn and “help”.

    Feb 01 at Feb 01
  • Reply Caitlin

    I know exactly what your going through! I had my first baby June 2015 and I’m due with my second (and last) baby next month. I was terrified that I was forever just going to be a plain ol’ mom and have to just look at my horses from the inside of my home but after my 6 week check up thumbs up I made it a goal to ride 1 day a week, then 2, and eventually I was riding back to my normal schedule! When I was breastfeeding it was a little harder to get my riding time in but definitely do-able! Keep up the positive vibes and keep us posted!

    Jan 25 at Jan 25
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