Thursday, September 15, 2016

Accepting the Truth

I have been ruminating on this post for a few days now.

And basically it can be distilled down to this.

The Truth Hurts
Criticism hurts.  Feedback is difficult. 

But as equestrians, we need this feedback.  We need to improve every time we swing a leg over.

Why did we miss that distance? 


 Usually it's us. 
This is why we have coaches and trainers.  More leg.  More leg.  More leg after that.  Keep the outside rein.  Possibly some more leg after that.

I dabble in dressage and sport horse in hand.  I like feedback.  Usually.  Sometimes it hurts. 

I submitted a video to a virtual show online, which is an interesting concept.  What I didn't expect was criticism that came along the lines of "Don't canter.  You can't even ride your horse."

Well I certainly have days where I feel that, but the feedback was a little brutal. 

Were there elements of truth?  Sure.  I do need help in fixing some more basic things like that pesky outside rein.

But where does this tie into the rest of life?

An acquaintance posted this video on Facebook.  This is Nyle DiMarco.  He is a Deaf activist, model, and obviously a man of many talents. 

I think it's great when people share videos and information.  Sometimes we just need feedback on the information we share.

Said acquaintance shared the video along with the caption that it's great for a deaf mute man to achieve dreams.  If he can, why can't anyone else?  OK, this is a basic distillation, but let's examine this caption.

Deaf mute is an archaic term, just as plenty of other words that used to be common vernacular a hundred years ago.  Over the years, it became seen as an offensive term as it implied the loss of language and the inability to speak, as well as limited cognitive ability, which of course is not true.

I just briefly shared my thoughts on the person's page that the term is no longer appropriate to use and that Nyle would refer to himself as Deaf (with the capitol D).  It is easy to google the differences in terms in the deaf and hard of hearing community or just click this link.

 Instead of confronting and accepting the truth, the post was deleted.  I was removed from the conversation.

I was disappointed.  I expect more from an equestrian professional, who spends her life pointing out the truth to others.

So fellow equestrians, keep on the journey.  Try and realize the truths, no matter how uncomfortable.  Let's keep up a conversation.

After all, when we put that leg on the horse, we don't want him just rushing forward, ignoring it, or pinning his ears.  We want a conversation.  We want a polite banter between horse and rider and as humans, we should strive to do as we ask of our horses.

So let's accept the truth when it is presented to us.


  1. I feel like the difference here is that you're asking for feedback and she wasn't. If I'm paying a trainer for a lesson, I expect feedback. If I post a photo of myself riding, I don't expect or want that same trainer to critique it publicly.

    1. Erika-you are absolutely right with the information that I provided.

      The person in question usually does post things both positive and negative with the sole purpose of provoking conversation, hence why I thought she would appreciate knowing some more information. She knows my background & disability.

      But is there a point where feedback has to be given whether solicited or not? I have stopped coworkers that had ventured along lines of inappropriate conversation about minorities and said point blank--that it was inappropriate and hurtful. But they are a bunch of older white women that have never left the small town that they thought it was OK.

      But perhaps it all depends on the situation and how it (truth) is discussed. I don't think it always should be solicited first, otherwise it is too easy to live in a vacuum.

      But thanks Erika--a point to think on and about.


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