Who am I? Who’s Cindy? And might I be having a mid-life crisis? Let’s start with the first one, we’ll address the second question in a bit!

I’m Gillian, mum of two littlies, wife to the farmer and work for Horslyx as their Brand Manager. I’m incredibly lucky to work part time in a fantastic job which allows me to follow my passion for the health and wellbeing of horses, work in a great team and be creative as well and I also have a bit of time to myself and for my family.

Farmer and myself have Darling Daughter (hereafter known as DD) and Darling Son (DS) and they keep us very busy! DD is four and a half and loving school, she loves being out on the farm, riding Flash and playing with friends while DS is two and a half and loves nursery, anything with wheels, especially tractors and swimming. Being their mum is the best job ever, although definitely one of the toughest jobs I’ve ever done too! Farmer is a busy man with arable, sheep and beef cows to deal with and I try and keep everything on the road whilst still doing my job to the best of my abilities. The wheels sometimes get a bit wobbly, but so far none of them have fallen off (I hope!).

If you’d asked me three months ago who Cindy was, I’d have said it’s Sindy with an ‘S’ and she was waaay better than Barbie! (Showing my age here; possibly a definite mid life crisis!) Sindy was the doll of my childhood and in my humble opinion far superior to my younger sister’s Barbies, however now Cindy is my horse (regularly called my pony even if she is 15h.h.). Eight weeks ago, Cindy came home with me, after spotting the ad, trying her out, considering it, then agreeing she was mine and her finally agreeing to load when we picked her up; then she came home. I have always ridden, but lost my last lovely boy, Paddy, 12 months ago in a field accident and it’s taken a while before I felt ready to plunge again into horse owning. I didn’t do too much with Paddy, but we had a lot of fun. The last time I did much that was competitive was many moons ago when university was still a dream, I had plans and corners were only in a dressage test, not on a XC course! Now I still have dreams, the plans have been scribbled over, ripped up, sellotaped back together again and then stuffed in the back of a drawer never to be seen again and corners are definitely on a XC course, but I still can’t ride them in a dressage test.

Cindy so far has been a star. She can’t decide if she loves or hates Flash, DD’s pony, and definitely isn’t impressed with Poppy the Border Terrier, who’s mission while I’m riding is to protect me from the evil beast (Cindy) who is running off with me! It’s a delight to have two equines in the family who are similar and both suit being inside during the day with all this grass, after a few years of a TB who needed all the grass in the world and a Welsh Sec A who ideally needs to view it from afar and have one sniff a day. Cindy is currently loving her Horslyx Pro Digest Balancer which is providing her with all her vits and mins, plus a bit of distraction while stood in and given her type I was worried that she’d never leave it alone and consume it like I do Dairy Milk – gone in a flash! Luckily she is quite happy taking it as and when she needs it, and I’ve got the reassurance that her diet is fully balanced.

So, the mid-life crisis? Well on Sunday I am actually going to compete in a local unaffiliated Showcross competition. So, is this a mid-life crisis or have I just found a bit of me again? How on earth with a farmer husband in the midst of calving, a four and two-year-old am I actually going to get out on Saturday to walk the course? Will I actually get there on time (with brave pants on!) to compete on Sunday? And am I mad to be doing this when the last competitive horsey thing I did was a wee hunter trial before marriage, kids and on a horse, I’d known for years? I guess the only way to find out is to kick on and go for it! As a friend recently said, you’ve got to start somewhere, and while my dream was just to have some me time and lots of fun with Cindy, I’ve definitely got a hankering to get back to be a bit more ‘Gillian’ to complement the job of being Mum and wifey!

Any tips for how to get through the weekend, the competition or just life as a working mum of two with horse and husband are gratefully received!

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