Posted by on Sep 20, 2011 in News | Comments Off on Change is the Spice of Life

Change is the Spice of Life

Although it has only been a month since I last wrote a blog entry, it feels as though so much time has gone by.  Many course-changing events have taken place and I am happy to say that I am more than satisfied with my current location.  On August 27th, The Road to the Pan American Games, a fundraising event to send Ginger and I to Mexico, took place.  After envisioning this event for the last six months and seeing it manifested into a reality was surreal.  It makes me realize that everything is coming together and falling into its proper place.  As I said the event was surreal for many reasons, it was incredible to look into a crowd of roughly three hundred people and see so many who I care for so deeply and who have been such an integral part of where I am now.  It was such an eclectic, but perfect group.  In total, the event raised roughly $12,000.  Wow, that is nearly Ginger’s flight to Mexico!  As a kid, who always dreamed of a chance to ride in an event of this caliber, I thought opportunities like this were possible with hard work; as an adult, I realize this opportunity is a gift created by a culmination of good health, great timing, God’s will, an unbelievable horse, and support from a community of amazing people.  This process has helped me realize what an amazing community I have had the fortunate opportunity to grow up in.   Thank you to all of you who attended the event and many who sent their support.  I have to thank my mother, Betsy McCarley Billys, George Cook, Dhyane Hawkins, the DeBoers, Bonnie and Scott Wolfe, Meghan Dayka, and those who came and spent time backstage to make this event happen.  Without all of you, my dreams would not be turning into the reality that they are transforming into.

In total honesty, the event left me in a raw place.  I felt very in touch with the quickly approaching trip to Mexico and realized that in order to be totally prepared for the biggest ride of my life, I was not going to be able to manage a twenty-seven hours per week school schedule.  After some tears and touching talks with my mom, I knew exactly what I was being called to do.  Within a week, I packed the horse trailer with Ginger’s and my supplies and moved to Carmel Valley where my coaches, Bea and Derek DiGrazia, live.  I live in an apartment on the side of the barn where I sleep about 20 yards from Ginger’s stall.  I spend my days cleaning stalls, cleaning tack, riding and getting all the little details sorted out for the trip to Mexico.  I feel like I can finally breath and finally focus on my horse and I.  I most certainly miss my family and horse family in Fresno, but I won’t be gone forever; I have to finish one more year of school.  While I have been here, I have been able to attend a much needed dressage show to regain my horse’s relaxation in the dressage arena.  My horse and I have also been able to practice daily with our coaches, which has greatly improved my confidence.

This coming weekend I will be riding at Twin Rivers Horse Trials, our final full outing before we leave.  Our goal is to put forth a strong dressage and stadium and a confident and moderately slow cross country.  I will do my best to write an update after this weekend.  Also, I had the very fortunate opportunity to be featured in an article on an eventing website.  I have attached the link below if you would like to take a look.

Thanks for reading!

Until next time,

Lauren and Ginger—represented.html