When I was little, I wanted to be a cowgirl. I wore my cowboy boots and hat all the time. I thought I was the real deal. Thanks to my hat and boots, I looked the part. All that was missing from the picture was a horse!
Growing up, I never had the chance to learn to ride a horse. My childhood dream of becoming a cowgirl eventually faded — probably about the time I outgrew my cowboy boots.
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Fast forward to many years later, 2015 to be exact, when a funny thing happened. I fell in love with a pair of cowboy boots and bought them for no good reason at all. I simply felt good inside knowing they were sitting in my closet. Shoes can be like that sometimes, you know.
One day, my husband asked me why I bought a pair of cowboy boots. I told him it was because I was going to learn how to ride a horse. Until then, I didn’t realize that idea had been floating around the back of my head. I was so glad that it popped out! Now that the idea was out in the open, I really wanted to make it happen.
I asked around town and found someone who gave horse lessons. I called and set up my first lesson. Even though I was nervous, I was excited to wear my new cowboy boots. Putting them on made me feel official. It brought back memories from when I was little and wanted to be a real cowgirl. My dream was finally coming true!
Although I had a little bit of experience riding horses, it was always on basic trail rides with super slow, old horses. Part of being a real cowgirl is knowing how to gallop! The thought of galloping on a horse scared and thrilled me at the same time. It was time to face my fears and try something new.
Over the past year, my horseback riding lessons have gone great. I started out with the basics and after a few weeks of riding my horse around in arena, my 12-year-old classmate dared me to a race. You know what that means. I had to gallop. After all, it was a dare! I was scared to death, but it was time to give it a try. There’s only one way to learn how to gallop — and that’s by doing it. So I did.
Hitting that goal was amazing! It was scary, but it was fun. My self-confidence grew a lot that day. I felt better and better about my riding skills and more comfortable on my horse. It was the breakthrough I had been hoping for.
Here I am, riding horses whenever I get the chance at home or on vacation. Whether I am in the mountains or on a beach, I think the going is always more fun when I am on a horse.
Taking time out of my usual schedule to focus on myself was one of the best things I did this year. Facing fears, learning new skills, making friends, all while fulfilling my childhood wish. Learning to ride a horse has given me confidence to try even more new things in the future. I like to think it all started with a little girl and a pair of cowboy boots.
When I’m not wearing my cowboy boots, I’m wearing my ankle booties. Lately, the Franco Sarto Women’s Dorinda Bootie is my go-to bootie for everyday life around town. Comfortable and stylish, these booties look great with everything from skirts to pants. My favorite way to wear them this holiday season is with a pair of cuffed skinny jeans.
Now it’s your turn to tell me a story. What helps you feel confident about yourself? When was the last time you achieved one of your goals?