This past winter I left my home for the longest period of time I have ever been uprooted in my entire life.
It might not seem like that long but if you knew me as a child, I was the kid who could barely leave the house for a sleepover.
When I was 14, my childhood best friend moved away right before we were about to start high school. That summer, my parents let me fly to her for a visit, but after her mom tucked me in to the guest bedroom I lied there awake crying until the entire house went to bed. Once they were all asleep, I snuck downstairs, called my family in the middle of the night, and was on a plane back home the next morning. UGH.
As I grew up (and got counselling) I learned to deal with my “situational anxiety” as the doctor put it and developed coping skills. Although I loved being “home” – I could at least leave for a week or two and not have a horrible time. #bonus
In to adulthood, I really struggled with the cold Canadian winters, but each year I would tell myself: "this year I will ride all winter!"
Fun fact: I can count on two hands the number of times I’ve been in the saddle over over the last 20 years in the cold.
Fast forward to 2021 - I got really serious about the sport of mounted shooting. Having “been there tried that” in almost every horse sport, nothing had me wanting to get up at 5am to load the trailer and hit the road – until someone put a revolver in my hand and a fast horse underneath me.
So I bought a trailer, a finished shooting horse, and hit the Canadian road. Throughout the 2022 season we won several titles and buckles, and I decided to book a one way (driving) ticket to Arizona to live and compete there for the winter.
It. Was. Bliss. Actually, it was cold AF for Arizona and I wore my long johns throughout the month of January – but it was not Canada and for that - it was amazing.
Then April came around and it was time to go “home.”
I cried as we pulled out of the driveway and headed North. I had found a new part of me down in AZ and none of it wanted to leave.
I drove back to Canada and was delayed in southern Alberta because of a snow storm in Saskatchewan, in spring. As I cursed the Canadian weather that night, I knew there was no way I was coming back next year until any threat of this illegitimate weather was long gone.
As the journey continued and I arrived back on my 80 acre dream farm in Saskatchewan, I wasn’t excited to be there. I had a beautiful home, an incredible barn, a thriving boarding business, and I didn’t want any of it.
After living for 4 months in 100 square feet, wanting nor needing nothing – my 1300sq foot home gave me anxiety. Everywhere I looked was STUFF. Stuff and things I hadn’t thought twice about for four months. I hadn’t missed that trinket on the bookshelf, painting on the wall, statue in the corner. None of it.
It was then I knew the time for change had come.
Thanks for reading - I’m excited to welcome you to my traveling cowgirl email series! A little different spin from my typical content on Prime Equine, this series will focus on the behind the scenes journey of living life as a nomad. How long it will last, depends on how long I live like a gypsy! Watch your inbox next week – my next email is going to share the work and preparation it took to sell my farm, (huge spoiler: I did NOT think it was going to sell so fast!)
See ya down the trail-