Simply a Phase
- March 8, 2017
- Savanna Simmons
A fellow mother and horsewoman and I were discussing phases of motherhood the other day, and giggling about how we are supposed to “dread” when our kids reach a new phase, like crawling for instance, and instead enjoy each phase. We agreed that while our kids are getting into more things they shouldn’t and must be watched all the time, watching them grow and learn is great fun, and we look forward to the changes while enjoying the phases they are currently in.
I am at a phase in my horsemanship that matches what is happening in my life. I am wrapped up in the needs of my kids, including making sure they are fed, clean (sometimes), and (mostly) happy. Hint: each kid must have his own cowboy and horse to keep everyone happy. The part that sometimes hits me is that I am on a huge, glorious beef cattle ranch and I have ridden the least I ever have in my life, and this is due to nothing more than my kids and the time they require. I am sad about it for a moment, and then I realize it is so worth it. My kids are so worth it.
The joyous part of this situation is that Brindle is reaching a phase in which he can RIDE! With me! We can ride together! To those mamas out there who miss the feel of a horse’s shoulders rolling between your knees as you long trot out to check cows peacefully grazing as their calves buck around them in the tall spring grass, sigh, it will return. This is a phase!
So as I reached for the finest bridles we have hanging in our tack room, I couldn’t help but feel a little silly. I’m wearing a ball cap, after all, with my hair stuffed up under it. My horses look fantastic and I feel dumpy. But it just doesn’t matter! It doesn’t matter that Brindle is wearing his “monkey” winter boots, because his feet don’t reach the stirrups yet anyway or that I have on my obnoxious puffy blue coat. Brindle doesn’t care, and the horses definitely don’t! All that matters to that little boy is that we are riding together.
It doesn’t matter that we rode in circles around our yard so that if something happened because of our very-gentle-and-broke-but-still-fresh horses, we were close enough that I could yell to my husband, or leave the horses in a secure area and run Brindle to the house. I have trepidations and fears that weren’t there prior to kids, and that’s ok.
It also doesn’t matter that in order for me to be in a photo, it probably has to be a selfie (sorry!), and that I was able to work with my colt, after sending Brindle to the house in his buggy, as the first stars started twinkling in the sky, and this is the first me-time of the day in which I am completely alone. It doesn’t matter that said “colt” is five-years-old and is still waiting for me to do more than groundwork with a saddle on. He will mostly-likely default to my husband who can turn him into the perfect kid’s horse, yet he’ll forever be mine, and I’m fine with it.
You mamas who are in the same phase I am, chin up for today and press on. You’re doing important work and your family needs you. Sneak away and ride when you can, and if you can’t, soon enough you’ll have little ones that can tag along. You’ll ride differently than you used to, but it’s fine. You’re needed and you’re doing a fantastic job of it.
About Savanna Simmons
I'm Savanna Simmons and I live north of Lusk, Wyoming, on the Four Three Ranch with my husband Boe and our sons, Brindle and Roan. I grew up evolving my horsemanship with clinicians like Ray Hunt, Joe Wolter, and Jack Brainard, but not within a...