Sunday, July 14, 2013


When you are a dancer, you work closely with your partner, getting to know the choreography and each other so closely that the movement partnership you both create seems as one liquid entity sliding through space and time accompanied by music. There is danger in the underdeveloped partnership, a risk for falls and injury, a risk of not creating the necessary magic that makes two humans seem like one. With a good partner, forging a good partnership, the seamless transition takes place. Communication, movement, respiration, even cognition, become effortless and synchronized. The dancers become the dance.

It's like that with riding, too.

I have been riding for a little over a year now, after a fourteen year break. In that time, I've ridden maybe seven different horses. One, I thought would become my partner -- Champ -- but ultimately, he and I have parted ways. A good decision, I think, if only because "working together" was increasingly becoming "fighting together", and whatever the reason for it, it definitely was not good. He gave me confidence to jump again, and took me through a beginner's horse trials without dumping me off, even though I rode like an idiot because I was so nervous. After that, the potential partnership just drifted away. We (I) struggled. He and I did not seem to want the same things anymore, so I let him go.

I had a lesson the other night, and one of the girls Wren rides with rode Champ in the lesson. He was not nearly as argumentative with her as he had been with me, but his sour stubbornness was definitely there.

I, however, rode Promise again. This time, my husband was there and he took some pictures. It was not a spectacularly great lesson -- not as awesome as the one I had last week in the indoor ring -- but nonetheless, it was good.

I did kind of lose it at the canter, though. Too far forward, and off balance. My brain (and my trainer) was going "sit down, sit down, sit down and RELAX" and my body was all "Oh holy shit! This is a racehorse!". Those pictures are not so great. Also remind me to never wear that shirt again while it's so humid. I think that thing stretched like three sizes.

Regardless, it was a lot of fun. I already know what Promise and I would practice, if I had practice time on her. Lots of bending. Lots of circles. Lots of transitions. And straightness. Halt at X seems more like a suggestion lately. But I feel better overall, riding her. Jumping? Is a little nerve-wracking, although she seems to really enjoy it, doesn't rush the fences, doesn't refuse. I just need to get over myself and LET her jump. She only schools 2' 6", which is perfect, because so do I!

Yep.....must adjust stirrups before we try that again! At least until I can handle the dressage-length stirrups at the canter (and by that I mean, sit on my butt like I'm supposed to and relax into it!).

And the kids HAD to ride, too, especially when Travis took Turkey out of the pasture for some attention and grooming.

Wren was ready to break out the vaulting surcingle, but we opted for her pony saddle and the leadline. Noah was kind of nervous up there, but he handled it. Turk is such a great guy, so very gentle, and patient.

I'm going to get him a bridle and bit so that Travis can ride him. Then we are going to try to find an Australian stock saddle for him to ride in. And then, maybe some medieval games!

Promise is still available for half lease, and the company that I have been doing some writing for has asked me to take on a few more hours, so my "horse money" has increased slightly. I so badly want to ride more regularly, but I also know that this last month of summer will not include enough time for me to do that, with the kids being around all day. The probability is fairly high that I will go ahead with the lease on Promise starting at the beginning of September. Once the kids are back in school, and are both gone til later in the afternoon, I think it would be more feasible. I can be disciplined enough to get my work done, the house stuff done, and get out to the barn at least three days a week to ride by myself.

For now, I'm hanging out in the holding pattern. It's working so far, and I am much happier than I was a couple of months ago.

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