Big Girl Boots
My Aunt Callie always said I had to get back on the horse if I fell off. It didn't matter if I got bucked off, or if my cinch was too loose, or if I went to turn a barrel and slipped too far. I always had to get back on that horse before she would let me leave the arena. She'd tell me "Blake, you need to put on your big girl boots and get back in that saddle". So I did.
That's how I grew up, riding with my dad or his sister every chance I got, and that's the way they taught me to live.
If something scared me, they'd just tell me to put on my big girl boots, and that was enough challenge to get me to do it.
Also, cowgirls don't cry.
I'd never been much of a crier. Hell, I was known for being tougher than my cousin Kellan, and I was proud of that. I was proud because I was tough.
Then, I met Coda. Coda was the girl with the whole world against her. Every time she started gaining confidence and feeling good about life, she'd get knocked back down. The thing about her was she didn't give up. Coda may have been a sweet, quiet soul, but she was tougher than any bull rider or bronc buster. She's the girl that showed me you can cry and still be tough. She's the girl that showed me what tough really is.
Coda Paxton was the girl who made me want to put on my big girl boots and get things done, and not just because of the challenge.
SEQUAL TO RIGHT BACK ON
This story is from Blake's perspective so it can be read as a standalone, but things might make a little more sense if you read Into My Own and Right Back On first :)