Our family, as a whole, and each of us individually, has suffered a few losses this month, but we've also found ourselves at the start of some new beginnings, too.
Of course, we lost Quinn, early this month. Travis lost his foster mother to cancer on Good Friday. Several friends have also experienced the loss of loved ones. Our relationship with the owner of the barn we had been riding and boarding Cinnamon at really began to deteriorate, and because we felt the best option for us was to move Cinnamon to a new barn, we have lost Turkey, even though he wasn't really ours in the first place.
We're in the middle of some nice, new beginnings, though, too. I have found a dressage instructor I like, and a barn where there are lots of adults and some kids, and everyone seems really friendly and welcoming. Wren seems to have found a place at a large hunter barn with TONS of kids and ponies.
It became evident weeks ago that Wren was not receiving the type of instruction that she needed in order to progress as a rider, and I was not able to really study the riding discipline I wanted to study. So a change was necessary. It has really paid off; Wren even wanted to, and tried to initiate, the canter on her lesson horse last night! Amazing transformation in just about a month! What a difference from the terrified, tearful child who didn't even want to trot! Now she's talking about jumping, and wanting to take some dressage lessons from my instructor, too!
I'm really enjoying my lessons with my new trainer, even though I have not yet cantered and I'm still working on the Introductory level work. I *feel* like I am getting my basics under control, but in photographs Travis took today, I was astonished to find myself looking kind of crummy...fat...round...lower legs not as close to the horse's side as they should be...body angle too far forward....ugh. I have so much to work on. It's depressing. Not at all what I had hoped I looked like. Good grief, I hope I don't stay a damned flappy, chunky, sack-of-potatoes beginner forever.
...and these are the best pictures. I'm not posting the really fat and ugly ones....
Cinnamon joined some like-sized friends at the barn where I am taking lessons. She is settled in, and after an altercation (not serious) with a small pony gelding who was looking for love in all the wrong places, she is happily munching hay and has a new friend, Holly, the miniature mare. She's a part of things there, and seems happy and content. I am thrilled she is in a smaller-sized pasture that is close to the "action" so people will see her and be able to keep an eye on her.
Wren hopes to go "trail riding" on her this summer at the new barn. I hope we can do that, too. I've decided to lease the pony mare I've been riding in lessons, even though she is not even 14 hands tall. She's a cutie, and her name is Destiny. Interestingly, a blazon from my registered coat of arms is one of her markings -- a horse head. It's right on her hindquarters. My arms are effectively a horse head on a white diamond.
See? It's facing the opposite direction, but there it is.
So, things are looking up, even though there is still some residual drama and entanglements to untangle. Hopefully that stuff will be done soon. I hope the cycle of loss and pain is done for a while. It's exhausting.