In 2014, I'm 30.
I'm not sad that the transition is coming. My twenties have been nothing short of dramatic with a huge amount of personal and professional growth.
While the number is daunting in a way, I really am looking forward to getting older. It also means I'm reevaluating my life and where I want to go.
Recently, especially within the last five years, my focus has changed from just riding and being an amateur to exploring more options as a rider and an active participant within the equestrian community (and you thought I just did clinics...).
However, the problem I see, and continue to see with my age group is the constant struggle to find good horses, good situations and living hand to mouth. We are all searching and fighting for the same thing: a living, a top horse, a good barn and support crew. Even as an amateur, I've experienced it in some fashion, and I'm very leery overall to put my toe in without having a safety net and plan in place.
I'm very lucky in the regard that over the period of years I've created a good network, have access to good training, and now have access to individuals who are starting to make investments with me. Sinari was one of those investments, Danzador is another, and there are a few more in the wings that I'm very excited about (I'm actually looking forward to winter in the north for once).
By no means, am I made in the shade, and things are evolving.
Right now I'm finishing up a few projects that will set the tone for the next eight years. I'm looking at finishing Sinari out potentially at I2, maybe Grand Prix in the next few years and then retiring her to being a pasture puff. Danzador continues to grow up, he'll most likely follow the national test track and not the young horse track, and Reba is still going through the levels as an eventer.
I guess the question I'm posing is where do I go from here?
There's a lot of answers. The first and most obvious is invest. Currently I'm expecting one new horse in to for 2014 (which brings my total under saddle herd up to 4), there is also the plan of breeding two, and one foal purchase for 2014 as well.
Alot of it is still fuzzy, and still a lot of details to be hammered out.
This represents the future of my program, which is scary to think how I'll spend the next six to ten years.