Quietann, that's a GEM of a post.
Jaslyn, here's what I have to say on this matter: sometimes when you think you aren't learning anything, or not progressing- that's when you are actually learning the most. On my gelding that I just sold, it was more than 1.5 years of disaster after disaster. I wasn't feeling like I was getting anywhere with him, and was scared to even canter on him after a while. Hell, sometimes even scared to trot. There was spooking, bucking, tension, overjumping, ducking out - you name the problem, we had it as a team.
Then I got Ollie, and I still had my old guy for a few months before he got his new home. I started taking lessons on Ollie, and my fear and regression in riding started to slowly dissipate. I got braver and slightly more confident, and started to ride my old guy some more after a few months. Suddenly, what I found was: I knew how to handle his issues a LOT more than I thought I did. Our 1.5 years of "failures" were actually a really long lesson in how to handle his kind of temperament, greenness and sensibility. I started being able to ride him BETTER than the much better and more confident rider who was training him a bit, because I had spent all that time on him, but suddenly could handle more. I anticipated his spooks, I knew how to settle him, and knew when to push and when not to. He still wasn't a good personality match for me, but I realized in the end that he had actually taught me WAY more than I thought I had been learning, and I'll be forever grateful for that.
Now as for you? You're learning. You're developing. Trust that you are. Sometimes you just have to have more confidence and faith in yourself that you ARE a good rider. I'd say to take some lessons on some old schoolies and get that sense of accomplishment back in you. I am guessing it's going to help you get your head back and realize that you CAN, in fact, ride your guy and do so much more than you think you're capable of.
Thank you all for the support.
Rode the boy three days in a row. Friday was one of the best rides I have ever had on him - even the dreaded right turn without bulging!
Yesterday, I had melt down. As in tears running down my face for hours. And yet, thinking back it wasn't that bad. It was windier than Friday. He did a sideways spook and I rode it. A little later, he did a butt scoot spook, and I rode it. Both times, his "reward" was getting whacked in the face. We even did a little trotting.
Thank goodness for super wonderful barn friends who don't let you feel too sorry for yourself for too long and are able to point out the good that you managed to accomplish.
Came home, sniveled some more and slept for about 9 hours.
So, today is blue skies, cool, but not cold, gentle breeze. When we get ready to ride, I have to hike out to the pack a lunch part of the pasture/woods to get my horse. This is after he made a brief appearance, but then took off for the rest of the herd. Gotta love those hikes - can't see where the ponies are in the woods. Stomping and cursing and calling. Finally find them in the farthest back corner they could be in and your horse looks at you as if to say, "Oh, hey, were you calling me?"
I get my horse and start the long trek back to the barn. And I wondered if his brain came with him - he tried to drag me; he lagged behind, he called to his pals - all things he normally does not do. Great, I say to myself, just great.
Get him back, get him tacked up and all is good. I get on and we start walking around and it does seem that his brain made the trip from the woods!
I ask for the trot - and feel like we are both about to fall down. Step, gimp, step gimp. Try the other way - it's worse. Ok, I get off, adjust the tack, check feet and get back on - same thing. I get off and go back to the barn and check his feet, rearrange my pads just in case, and go back out and get back on. Same thing - he's lame. Can't find any soft/sore spots, but he is most definitely lame.
But, I got the trots I wanted, was posting along on the three legged horse, so it was, all in all a good ride.
Thanks again. I will keep pushing forward!
Some random thoughts and updates.
-- Still not riding, but will hopefully be back in the saddle next Monday. Weather and work permitting. I've actually enjoyed the time off. I miss Oliver, but it's hard trying to focus on riding and improving while managing work problems in your head at the same time. And the heat. The heat really got to me this year, even though we had a milder summer.
-- Since the weather is changing, I'm taking Oliver off One AC until April, and until then, trying out Grand Hoof. His hooves really aren't that bad -- for a thoroughbred -- but he's barefoot right now and I'd like to keep him that way.
-- After not riding for 3 months, I'm ridiculously happy that I continued to let the teen at the barn keep riding him. She loves him and spoils him like I do. And it keeps him in shape. She showed him this past weekend (dressage) and walked away with 2 red ribbons!
-- First of the year, I plan on getting my old Crosby PDN taken apart and flocked with wool and maybe getting some extra pads put in for his withers. Well, assuming there's nothing wrong with the interior parts. I can probably do it for around $300-400 ... which is still a lot better than buying a new saddle. He's not complaining, but he has shark fin withers and while my saddle fits good enough, it's not as good as it could be.
Dewey, she looks great! She's got a huge jump -- and those knees!!
Originally Posted by Dewey
Bumknees: I haven't officially posted in a while, but I've been keeping up with you and your posts and you're doing great! There's been a huge change. I hope it continues going well!
Everyone else, please know I've been reading your posts and sending jingles your way!
And WELCOME to the newbies! :yes: I hope you all find the support and encouragement you need here, or at least some of it. It's so much easier when you have friends that understand. :)
I know I haven't written much yet. I'm trying to catch up on this thread. :). Anyway, thought I would ask for some jingles. I have an appointment tomorrow to go over my MRI results. About seven months ago I whacked my ankle when I was cantering in the warmup ring at a show. Just wasn't paying attention, was looking right, and whacked the left foot on a fence post. It STILL hurts. So finally had the MRI on Friday. Hope I don't have to stop riding for any amount of time. Not when I am just starting to feel like my riding is improving!
Jingles to you ParadoxFarm, let us know how it goes!
Thanks, fluffy. I will. Fingers crossed.
Any news ParadoxFarm? I hope the MRI results were good. Sometime soft tissue injuries take a really long time to heal, so you could just be nursing a really awful, deep bruise.
Back from London -- it was great, and now it is time to start focusing on riding more and getting in better shape! I am determined to have a good training winter so we are ready to have a successful show season next year! Progress in the hunter ring, as well as a 2 or 3 schooling events, mostly to test our dressage improvement.
jaslyn -- I totally empathize with your frustration, and I agree with PaintedHunter, I often have to remind myself that I am not as big of a mess in the saddle as I feel some days. So odd, because I have self-confidence to spare in the "real" world at work, etc., but I have such a lack of confidence in my riding ability. I don't really undertand it, other than that the bad fall I took in July, 2010 may still have me shaken up.
Well, shoot. Results in. Talar dome fracture lateral and medial. Basically a crushed ankle. I came home in a full hard cast. No riding. Heck, no anything for a while. After the hard cast comes off in three weeks I have to be in a boot cast. I can't believe it's taken seven months to get to the bottom of this pain. I'm embarrassed to say I'm a little depressed right now. :(
I don't think I relayed how this accident happened. I was at a schooling show in the warmup ring. A girl had fallen off her horse and was down at the other end of the arena. I was cantering to the right and looking over my right shoulder to see if the girl was okay. Well, I got too close to the fence and whacked a fence post with my ankle. It made a popping noise. Ouch. I then went in and did my class. (Dummy). I did drop my second class, though. But that's what happened. I continued to ride since then and it has been okay in the saddle. It's walking that could stop me in my tracks. Sigh.
Oh no -- so sorry Paradox. But do everything the doctors say so you can get back in the saddle, all healed up, as soon as possible.
Sorry to hear the news Paradox. Jingles for a speedy and straightforward recovery
Thanks, Tarheel and Hazel. I hope it heals well. It's going to be a tough couple of weeks not being able to not only ride, but just hang out in the barn. But, darn it, my husband will have to pick stalls for a while.
Paradox, hope your ankle heals quicker than quick!
Oh so sorry Paradox. I hope you recover soon and in the meantime take advantage to do all the things that horse-time usually eat up :)
Paradox, that sucks!!! Nothing worse than being sidelined when you don't feel it's the wrong call mentally, but right call medically.
Opus, I hope you're able to get back in the saddle soon. It sounds like you're keeping busy otherwise!
PH, I think you're totally right. 1.5 years wasn't wasted, though it seems like it at the time...that's life and the lessons it teaches us. If you're better for it, it wasn't a waste at all. Your work DID pay off, just with a different horse. :)
Well ladies and gents...I have an announcement!! I BOUGHT MY FIRST HORSE!
He's an 11 year old German Riding Horse (WB) gelding. He used to be a jumper, and then somehow changed hands several times to end up with a girl who wasn't able to ride him regularly. He apparently regularly jumps out of his paddock. He's SOOOO sweet and very good-natured. He made friends with the other horses in our barn already and has stood quietly for everything we've done so far. He moves like a dream! We just need to get him back into shape, add a lot of muscle, deworm him, take care of his feet, and get rid of that grass belly. But I'm just so thrilled to be able to own a horse...I have to pinch myself daily!
Here he is!!!
In his previous home
Us, together today
Post-shaving and bath...love his conformation!!
I'll get a shot of us tomorrow before we head out to work, with his bridle on and not wet so you can see how handsome he really is :)
I need name suggestions! Something classy but not pretentious. Something with sentimental value is a bonus. Right now I'm floating around the idea of Falcor (like from the Neverending Story) but I need a barn name. I like Finn but I'm not sure of a show name then. Or any suggestions are welcome! Thanks for listening to my sqeee-ing. I've been dreaming of this my whole life!
CONGRATULATIONS!!!! He is VERY handsome. And I LOVE the look on your face in the second picture. I am the worst for picking names so I don't think I'm much help there but I am very excited for you. Looking forward to more pictures :). And squeeeee all you want, it's a huge reason to squee and we will all squee right along with you.
Actually I like the look on his face in the second picture too. It looks like the feeling is mutual
Congratulations Pancakes - so wonderful that your dream of your own horse has finally come true! And that "pinch yourself" feeling may last a long time. I have had Tajar for 3 years, and every now and then, I still look at him and can't believe he is mine.
As for names, I came up with Tajar's barn name by thinking of things with an association with when/how I came to fall in love with horses as a kid. Just an idea on what you can use for inspiration (his show name is his registered name, so I did not have to come up with 2 names).
Pancakes, what a nice looking horse. He looks like a very solid citizen, a good first horse.
Paradox... ow ow ow! I hope you heal quickly.
For anyone who wants to see what the golden girl and I are up to (waiting for the vet/farrier who are coming on Thursday), go here. That was Saturday, before Sandy showed up.
Pancakes, he is beautiful and I love love the expression on both your faces! His says, I have a mom, all my own!
So, here is video of my boy doing his first cavalettis and crossrails off the farm! The first 35 seconds are repeated, just keep going.
Video is such a great tool. Apparently I have developed the abominable habit of posting off the cantle and throwing my hips forward. :no: I see no-stirrups work in my near future. Too many years of working with spooky babies has wreaked havoc with my formerly lovely equitation.