Monday, July 30, 2012

Proud Mommy Moments: Riding with Confidence

For those of you who know our little Grace, you probably know that she can be very shy at times and has a difficult time trying new things.  She can be extremely anxious about new things... going from complete-calm to total-freak-out in no time.  After lots of talks, Joel and I think that 3 deployments in 4 years has caused her to cling to routine and things she knows well.  She struggles with things outside of her little comfort zone. She thrives on routine and the things she knows.

The last few years, I've been waiting and watching - wondering what things will interest her.  What will her hobbies be?  Will she like sports?  What will catch her attention?  What will she fall in love with?  I've tried hard not to push her... but just let something grab her.

That something has grabbed her and it's horses.  I know loving horses isn't unusual for a 6 year-old.  But it's the one thing that she's totally in love with.  She has STACKS of horse books that she pours over.  I mean, seriously, pours herself over... studying pictures, memorizing pictures, asking a million questions about something I know so-little about.  Pretty regularly, I will go into her room at 11 pm, ready to go to bed myself, and find her bed covered in horse books.

So, horses are her thing.  And now that's she's found her thing, we were excited to get her involved.  I found a great place in our area that offers riding lessons.  They work a look with disabled kids - from extreme physical disabilities to learning disabilities and anxiety issues.  I knew they would be able to work with Grace, so I couldn't wait to let Grace know she was signed-up for riding lessons.

For the last several months, Grace has asked me daily when riding lessons would start... and a billion other questions about riding that I know nothing about.  And then the big day came and both of us were bursting with excitement.  Well, me with jealously.  But she was totally excited.

And she did awesome.  My little girl who is so anxious about nearly everything was so ready to meet the horses, help groom them, pet them and get on one.  She's gone three times now and each week, she grows in confidence and skill.  This past weekend, she did her first trail ride, and did so well.  She was in her element.

These last three deployments have had their effect on her.  They've caused her to cling to the known and feel anxious about things beyond her control.  We continue to pray that God would calm her heart and anxieties.  And I know He will.  Right now, we are just thankful, that these horses seem to be a part of that process.

Head over to EmmyMom and link-up with us for Proud Mommy Moments!


Emmy said...

Yea!!! What a great PMM! So awesome that she has found something she loves and is able to overcome her anxiety's that is huge! So happy for her and you!

Tayor (Our Military Home) said...

I am watching the equestrian races right now on the Olympics-perfect timing for reading this post. I'm always amazed by the therapeutic value that animals give us every day. I am so glad Grace found something fun and delightful that helps her!

Christine said...

that is so exciting! as a fellow equestrian i can attest that horses are SO good for a person's soul! it sounds cheesy but it's so true!! it's certainly something she can do for a lifetime. i started riding at 7, and even though life has gotten in the way a little i am always yearning to head out to the barn!

Kmama said...

That is so great! I'm so glad she's found something that she can really love, and it will hopefully help with her anxiety.

Thanks for linking up with Emmy and me.