Mariah-dark,lean,young at the canter with Lauren in the saddle. July 14, 2008

Mariah-light, robust, mature at the canter with Caroline in the irons. July 27, 2012

Progress comes slowly, invisibly sometimes.  When you are waiting for it and watching the signs you do not see it.  But turn your head and it has been there all along inching its way toward change.

Progress has been difficult to measure for me, in terms of my home (so many obstacles), my horses, my family and in so many ways, my life.  I want to do right and try but seem to fall back as much as I step forward.  Looking for writing inspiration tonight I reviewed my pictures.  I have always loved to shoot pictures.  I remember in college walking down the main part of the campus looking at the Colorado sun shining through the trees.  I looked at my friend and said, “wouldn’t that be a great picture?”  She looked surprised and said, “I never met anyone who thought in pictures before.”

It was quite a compliment to me.  Like I had just had someone compliment me on learning a second language.  So, yes I have thought in pictures and tonight these two pictures tell a story of a dark, lean filly who has grown up to be a beautiful, white mare.  Her owner now would tell you she still needs so much progress.  There is still so much she needs to learn.  It is true but I (we) must be mindful to not miss what we have accomplished in view of what we have yet to do.

There will always be more to learn.  More to see, more to do.  But I will try to step back and turn my head so I can look again at what I had seen before and view the progress that I have made.

As we head into finals season, may all the riders look back at how far they have come to reach their dreams.  They may not touch their dreams, maybe not this year, maybe not ever.  But each rider that has come this far, be it Zone finals, regional or national finals reflect just a moment, on a year ago, three years ago or maybe even five.  If they need a reminder of how far they have come-well, I probably have plenty of pictures that I could show them.