A jumble?

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I also got a brief run in…

So, things have also been very interesting this week. In a nutshell:

  • Listed my condo as I mentioned on the weekend and accepted offers on Tuesday. Exciting!
  • Rode in my dressage semi-private on Tuesday and things were GREAT!
  • Work computers went ka-blammo also on Tuesday. Not so great.
  • Jump lesson Wednesday and it was…a challenge? Some good and some ‘needs a lot of work’ but what I can say- Oats is a babysitter too, and he took great care of me when I was doing a lot of my regular dumb things- riding backwards, pulling, getting left behind, not committed= no problem mom, I got this!

So yeah, wow.

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Beers with my husband at Car Free Day. A great weekend event!

I was VERY pleased with my dressage lesson. We worked on transitions, but not in the way you think- they were more like, good forward walk, ok go up to HUGE trot (it felt like we were flying!) and then transition back to good walk, and then huge trot again, to the canter. We were going to intentionally let them break into canter from the huge trot, so the transition felt very seamless and uphill. It did, actually. The only issues I had was Oats getting distracted down the long side – felt like I was wrestling with a shark at this crazy big trot. His canter transitions felt amazing though.

And- the forward work we did really ‘bled through’ to my jump lesson on Wednesday. Oats had 1 big spook at the tractor in the field (thanks doofus) but he was quite nicely forward and very obliging. Our gymnastic work- my nemesis- was SO good! The jump at the end went up to 2’6” and I swear it looked about 2’3”. I didn’t even believe Nicole when she said it was higher, and I kind of still don’t believe her. The course work was….a work in progress.

I need to get better about my hands pulling back, and for me, being more honest about the distance to the jump. So, bring my hands down, and commit to the jump, dammit! Oats was golden. He took any distance, never a bad thought in his head. Love him! I don’t want to lie to him about distances….

I only did the course once (yeah I wimped out) but I am trying. Slowly but surely, I am trying.

Next up: Tying a home-made bucking strap to the d-rings on my saddle, to give my pulling, too-high hands somewhere to anchor to when the desire hits me. I want to improve!

 

 

Clawing my way back

So, to close out the long stream of pouty posts- I have a better (not great but better) update. I had a jump lesson last night, and while coursework is still a bit beyond my poor frazzled brain, Oats proved to me that he can be both a packer and a pony that saves my butt!

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Want to feel bold again!

I do wish he didn’t have to, but honestly- coming off a string of falls jumping, a lesson where he stopped a lot, and a bad horse show-I just don’t have the confidence in me right now to ride the way I need to ride. I know that about myself. I will need to claw it back, and regain the lovely, forward confidence that I had as shortly as a month ago.

We worked in the outdoor and the rain held off- thank god too, because it had been rainy/drizzling while I was warming up but then surprise! It stopped! Oats was spooky, he eyes were on stalks, he was looking looking looking for anything to get silly about. In hindsight, it was an excellent opportunity to manage both my nerves and his ‘looky’ behaviour in a safe, controlled environment- a lesson. Bonus for the both of us!

So, we worked on gaining his attention and not in the way I would have been forced to if I was riding alone (through anger, adrenaline and other unpleasant ways). It was a give-and-take, a PAY attention! Ok good, soften hands. PAY ATTENTION! soften hands…

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I remember when this felt high??

And it worked!

We then worked our way up to a canter-in gymnastic (which weirdly are becoming my favourite things, even though I have notoriously hated gymnastics, the canter-in ones are like, soooooo good for me).

We did that until my brain had enough- it gets easily ‘flooded’ right now with anxiety- and my trainer let me walk on a few successful ones ending in a small oxer. Oats was great!

We then worked over a teeny tiny outside line- five strides- and proceeded to bungle it SO bad. I just could NOT let go of my horse. I held held held…And chased and then held. Eeeek..

Oats, to his good nature and credit, still jumped it very gamely. He was 100% honest, I just couldn’t let go of his face. I still feel a bit bad about it. Nicole suggested I ride with one hand and surprise! I was able to ride through the line without bungling it tooooo badly. It was still not pretty and wow…Even though we got the 5-strides, I still grabbed on to his face for dear life over the second fence with my one hand gripping like grim death.

Interesting…

So to wrap up- my head game needs some work to ride boldly forward and let go of Oats’ face, but to give me some credit too- I took some hits and I can’t brush off how it had affected me.

 

God made the world round so we would never be able to see too far down the road.

Another quote by Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen).

Wrapping up my jump lesson yesterday, and my trainer was saying that was the best she’s ever seen Oats and I go. WOW! Crazy eh? It seems like only last month – and it probably was last month- I wasn’t there yet. And yet I still feel a bit like a fraud?

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No-hands screenshots!

Well not quite like a fraud and you know what? The jumps went from 2’6” in the course to 2’9” in the gymnastic and it felt TOTALLY FINE. Like, go ahead and do it again? Sure! Why not. Who is this person, and who replaced her with a pod-person who is totally nonchalant about both grids and big(er) jumps?

Both me and Oats are pod-people I guess, and I’m going with it!

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Screenshots from the last show! 2’3”

We worked on a brief gymnastic similar to last week, except it was a 1-stride and not a 2-stride x-rail to vertical. Then we circled left over the hay bales (that eventually got stacked one on top of the other, oooooh), and then over the diagonal fence, to a smaller corner (kind of like a weird oxer), to the other diagonal, and then back to the first diagonal. And this was our full 2’6” course. We did it twice!

Was it perfect? Nope! We got in too close to one of the diagonals and knocked it down. And once I got a bigger chip to the other diagonal fence. Oops! But otherwise, it was pretty damn flawless and I am proud of my riding, and my horse.

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More from the last show! 2’3”

I almost hate recapping my rides of late, because they are so fantastic and I’m so happy, I am thinking, when does the other shoe drop? But, it doesn’t have to. I’m progressing, after so long of doubting myself, stress, anxiety, fear, worry. Riding doesn’t have to be that way, and I’m learning that without a doubt, I – and Oats- CAN do it.

And we are doing it.

Funny, I wanted to jump on Wednesday but I was in a pretty terrible mood (thanks work, and car repair payments and life), got to the barn, warmed up, saw the jumps set up, almost jumped them but instead got off and went back to the barn. I decided that nope–I am saving myself to jump some big jumps on Thursday. And then we did! A good decision.