Find your cherry pie!

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Mmmmmmm pie, cherry pie!  Is it just me or do the majority of my recent blog posts have some sort of sweet thing making a guest appearance?  While it’s true that I’ve been known to slam on brakes and lose all sense of the outside world when I see a bakery display case, I point my finger to early morning Basic Training workouts as the reasoning behind my altered state and sending my otherwise normal metabolism through the roof.  These workouts have got to burn at least 3000 calories in one hour! Seriously, Santa and his reindeer aren’t going to appreciate those large holes I’ve created these past 3 weeks.

Last night we enjoyed dinner out with some friends and my husband described my post workout ravenous eating habits as entering the pantry and coming out with everything edible and ripping off box tops.  Really, it’s not that bad.  Just need food quickly and food that doesn’t require any arm strength for its preparation.  For example, I was making eggs after a workout and asked hubby if he wanted any.  He was disappointed that the end result was boiled eggs.  I thought you were going to scramble them?

Sorry to disappoint, but this entry isn’t really about me stuffing my face with cherry pie, I’ll save that for my post Gallop & Gorge 8K run.  It’s about giving yourself the opportunity to enjoy life’s deliciousness no matter what shape or form that comes in.  There will be times when we don’t feel deserving or confident and push the pie aside for another time, another day, but that will just make you crave it even more.  When I was a child, my mom would make the most beautiful handcrafted pies on Sunday.  She would proudly display her creations in the kitchen before dinner.  My brother would walk by and select his pieces ahead of time by licking his finger and poking it through the pie in random spots multiple times.  Boys!  I would get so mad that mom would carefully select an unadulterated piece for me and put it on a clean plate.  I would then wrap it and hide it in my piano bench for later.  Sadly, I would tend to forget about it until I pulled out my books later that week to practice.  Life would have been so much better if I just ate the pie.  The whole thing?  Absolutely!  Gross brother germs and all.  Alas, that opportunity is gone.  I’m not that skinny kid anymore.

There are times in life when you just need to go for it and be spontaneous.

This morning my horse and I tried something completely different.  I’ve picked away at the crust for some time, even studied the lattice for years, but set aside the whole pie… until today.  What a lovely morning, the air cool and crisp, but with a lot less bite than yesterday.  I was calm and Noel was totally relaxed as we tacked up in the barn.  I had no expectations going into our ride, but felt that it might be time.  I started with a nice stretchy walk on a free rein.  Taking in the autumn colors and enjoying the sunrise.  We transitioned naturally into trot serpentine loops.  This is one of my favorite all-time exercises for loosening up her muscles and testing her response to my seat.  She was incredibly balanced and even on both reins.  This was so easy for her.  As we picked up the canter, the bluebirds started lining up along the fence on cue.  What a fun audience!  Her canter was perfectly uphill with enough collection to perform almost any exercise.  We’ve worked tremendously hard at improving her canter.  Lots of patience.  Her canter rhythm followed my breathing or maybe my breathing was following her rhythm?  I made a decision in that moment to ride the changes down the long side and on the quarter line.  I took a deep breath, applied my aid and she changed canter leads, I counted to three, took another deep breath and she changed to the opposite canter lead, I counted to three took another deep breath and she changed canter leads again.  While not officially 3x tempis from a counting perspective, it was wonderful nonetheless.  We immediately celebrated with lots of neck rubs and snorts.  Tears welled up in my eyes.  Not because I was sad, but because we broke through our own barriers and ate that whole yummy pie right there.

Performed just like my dreams.  I probably should have leaned back more, but I was a wee bit over the top excited!  If it never happens again just like today, that will be OK because I now feel whole.  We found our cherry pie!

Thank you, Noel

Thank you, Noel

Don’t practice your art,
But force your way into its secrets,
For it and knowledge can raise men to the divine.

Ludwig van Beethoven

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