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Can we have an adult re-rider support group?

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  • Well, I've been busy with work for a while now, but thought I'd pop in and post ...

    I skipped my lesson Monday so I could be on call for a coworker, who has the late shift. But, I made it up today and it was a GREAT lesson!

    More cantering. In fact, mostly cantering. Oliver's such a good boy. There is no hesitation at all when he goes to canter. This is in stark contrast the QH mare I rode last summer, who would take forever to go into a canter, and then break from it about 4 or 5 strides in. So frustrating. But not Oliver. He could feel me move into position and he would pick it right up. And he didn't break a single time unless I asked him to. I also managed to canter almost a complete lap around. Last lesson I'd canter on the straight sides only. And this time, I did straight-curved-straight.

    By the end of the lesson, I was going into the canter with no hesitation or mental prepping. Unfortunately, I was also getting sloppy with my cues which caused him to pick up the wrong lead a couple of times. BUT the good news is, by the last few cantering trips, I was riding it (and not thinking 'CANTER! CRAP, I'M CANTERING!'), looking down to check the lead, bringing him down to a trot for a simple change, and even doing little half-halts.

    Aside from getting sloppy on my canter cue, I also need to get my hands lighter and learn to give him his head more -- and breathe. But I didn't collapse my side(s) in the corners, I was really getting into his rhythm and sitting the canter fairly decent.

    So, more cantering next week, and hopefully, I'll be more patient and a little more forgiving.
    The dude abides ...


    • There is nothing more fun than cantering! And a willing horse! Rock on, Opus!

      (P.S. Unless it's jumping A small jump is just a long canter stride. Call me "official re-jumper enabler." Dirty grin.)
      Blog: The Continuing Adventures of an (ahem) Mature Re-Rider without a Trust Fund...but, finally, A Farm of Her Own!!


      • Opus, it sounds as though you held out for the right horse. Your happiness came shining through your entire post! Keep it up, and before long you'll be wondering why you thought cantering was such a big deal.

        You go, girl!
        I heard a neigh. Oh, such a brisk and melodious neigh as that was! My very heart leaped with delight at the sound. --Nathaniel Hawthorne


        • Originally posted by Opus1 View Post
          BUT the good news is, by the last few cantering trips, I was riding it (and not thinking 'CANTER! CRAP, I'M CANTERING!')
          I'm so glad to hear I'm not the only one who has those moments! Or my personal favorite, OMG I'm cantering... CRAP is that a jump 2 strides out.

          FINALLY got back to the barn yesterday after a long absence due to allergies, rain, dog shows and needing to do things in my yard. Lesson has been rescheduled for tomorrow. Should be interesting as I'm... oh just a little out of shape for riding! Good news is that I've stuck to my diet for 7 weeks now and I can really tell the difference in how my clothes fit. Still a ways to go but it is progress.

          Had a nice ride yesterday. Horsie was in super babysitter/candidate for sainthood mode and took great care of me. We trotted a bunch poles on the ground, jumped a low cavaletti and finished off the "jumping" part of the ride by trotting in/we'll call it cantering out of a crossrail. Not too bad for how long I've been off riding. Took a little bit to get back in synch with the canter but ended up doing some laps each direction.

          Hope everyone has a good weekend.


          • Yay Opus and iechris! So glad you both had such great lessons. Hopefully that karma will hit my lessons this weekend too. It's a gorgeous spring day in Atlanta -- wish I was at the barn insted of the office!

            The vet is coming on 5/21 to check out Tajar (btw, it is pronounced like "badger," but starting with a "T" - when I chose that for his barn name, I did not think about how it isn't pronounced anything like how it's spelled!). I think I mentioned earlier that we've been battling some nodular sarcoids -- total pain in the butt, but at least they aren't the open/weepy kind of sarcoids, which I think look harder to deal with. I am 99% sure that the Fluorouracil injections aren't working on the one he has on his girth area, and we'll have to discuss a more aggressive approach. I've done some research, and unless the vet has a persuasive reason against it, I think I am going to use laser treatment rather than freezing. This may mean having to trailer him to Auburn or UGA vet school, while freezing could be done here, but it seems the laser has a quicker recovery time and less incidence of reoccurence. Not sure how long he'll be off for recovery when we do whatever it is we end up doing - hopefully all will go well and it won't be too long.
            Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson


            • Sounds like everyone's having a good week so far. Let us know what the vet says Tarheel. Good for you iechris and Opus.

              My son had a very successful first show. He had time faults both days and one rail down today but aside from that he was awesome. I think he was nervous but got around the courses and I was a very proud Mama. He is easily the youngest person in that ring by probably 10 years. Quiet day tomorrow and then i show on Sunday. Wish me luck (and no stupid special-adult moments).


              • Thanks everyone! I know it sounds silly, but I finally feel like a 'real' rider again. It just took a little more time than I thought.

                Originally posted by mortebella View Post
                P.S. Unless it's jumping A small jump is just a long canter stride. Call me "official re-jumper enabler." Dirty grin.
                Ha! Actually, aside from a couple of tiny little crossrails I did last spring and some ground pole courses, I haven't done *any* jumping work at all. Which is why I'm so excited to be going in that direction again.

                Originally posted by Dewey View Post
                Opus, it sounds as though you held out for the right horse. Your happiness came shining through your entire post!
                Thanks, Dewey! I still can't believe I'm actually cantering again. And yes, I'm very glad Oliver came along. It's so funny how having the right horse makes all the difference.

                Originally posted by iechris View Post
                I'm so glad to hear I'm not the only one who has those moments! Or my personal favorite, OMG I'm cantering... CRAP is that a jump 2 strides out.
                YES! I don't do them for everything, but those moments that I'm not familiar/comfortable with, it seems I get caught up in my head and things look and feel different. Like the very first time I mounted up after my 12 year hiatus. Or the first time I trotted. They were familiar to me, but completely foreign at the same time.
                The dude abides ...


                • Tarheel: How long have you been dealing with the sarcoids? I have no direct experience with them -- any of them that I'm aware -- but I wish you much luck on the treatment.

                  Originally posted by HazelG View Post
                  Quiet day tomorrow and then i show on Sunday. Wish me luck (and no stupid special-adult moments).
                  Good luck at the show tomorrow! And please -- no special-adult moments.

                  On my super-great day on Thursday, I managed to not tighten the girth enough and as I mounted, the saddle ended up completely on Oliver's side, with me on his back (sorta) wondering why he was wigging out a little and why my trainer's face had this 'REALLY?!' look on it.

                  I only do stupid things when I lesson. I don't do them on my own. Not sure why.
                  Last edited by Opus1; May. 12, 2012, 03:32 PM.
                  The dude abides ...


                  • Opus - hysterical on the saddle! Glad you didn't end up on the ground!

                    I've been dealing with the nodular sarcoids, on and off, since right after I bought Tajar in October of 2009. In December, 2009 - January, 2010, he had a couple pop up around his left whither. Vet injected a couple of times and they went away! Yay! Then around the same time in the winter of 2010-11, he got a few more than the previous winter, all still by the whither area, and again they went away after a couple of months of doing the injections once every 3 weeks. This winter, a few cropped up again on the whither area, a bit bigger this time, about the size of a dime and maybe 1/6 of an inch raised. And the dreaded couple at his girth area showed up for the first time. They grew more aggressively and are about the size of a quarter and about 1/4 of an inch raised. The ones on his whither are responding to the injections pretty well, as usual, but not the ones on the girth area. I think the injections kept them from getting out of control and getting bigger, and in the last 2 weeks they do seem to have reduced in size a little, but not as much as the vet hoped given that he really upped the dosage of the injection there.

                    Fortunately, they do not bother Tajar. No soreness or swelling or anything (except right after one of the injections once, he was a little sore from that). But the ones at the girth will eventually start to bother him if we don't do something about them (as per the vet).

                    I guess this is something we might end up dealing with every winter. But in the grand scheme of things that can go wrong with your horse, this is pretty minor, and I am grateful for that.

                    He did manage to yank out a good spot of tail hair this week! Again I say But you can't really see the small bald spot on the dock of his tail unless you are up real close, so I don't think it will be visible to judges when we finally start showing in a couple of months (once I have some time to get some practice in now that work isn't as crazy as it was in February and March).

                    We had a good lesson today, so I feel as if we are now back on the right path after struggling a little this winter. Such a relief! Hoping to lesson again tomorrow, but rain is headed this way, so not sure what tomorrow will bring.

                    HazelG - we can't wait for show updates!
                    Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson


                    • Well, gang, I've just spent the last half hour reading the latest, and catching up on all of you. I haven't posted for a few days, because, well, I'm simply so happy! Can't believe how much FUN it is to go to the barn again! My teeth are hurting from all the smiling!

                      Now, our world is not perfect, however. B has decided that in his new digs, he is so amped up and happy, that it is back to the drawing board again! with ground work, taking direction, actually realizing that the people here on the ground want something from him? I let him settle in for the first couple of days and left him alone. He's in a little paddock of his own with his lovely run-in, a few feet away from the rest of the gang's paddock. Have walked him over to the huge indoor, with the iron grated stalls at the end for tacking up, and he has had a FIT in there, when out of sight of the other four. So I've done that a few times. One day he's fine, the next having a fit again. Tried once to longe him in there (forget riding!) and he was not going to have any of it - quivering and anxious. Been on the phone with a couple of trainers from the past, including his racetrack trainer's wife, and we all agree he'll get over it in time.

                      Today I merely tried grooming him in his run-in, which I had done a couple of times before very successfully, and he had another conniption - very assertive - pawing at me, throwing his head. Actually even reared up a little. Well, the rest of the gang had newly been moved right next door, and he was out of sight of them again!

                      New barn owner and I worked together (imagine that! working TOGETHER with the barn owner! ) and we got his little temper tantrum under control. Oh, gee, golly whiz, ya' mean ya' want me to be good?!? The two of us walked him back into his run-in. Had him stand quietly, I brought him back into the pasture also used as an outdoor, actually put tack on him! and he actually longed. From big brat, to ok, ok, I really know what you want. It was so funny, and he is so dang smart. Just got into the routine - actually did very nicely. I couldn't get him to canter comfortably at the old place, and even though the ground is still a bit squishy here, he broke right into it, and seemed comfortable doing it. Yay!

                      Who knows what tomorrow will bring?!? But we have a lesson on Tues, and BO's trainer specializes in green horses, so we are all set.

                      I really think it is 1) all those lavish, see forever, green fields across the way - so he thinks we're back at Belmont near the turf course! , or 2) he is so ecstatic, he really, really, really Mom just wants to be a horse for just a little bit longer?!? Unfortunately, he won't be getting a pass. But I have no concerns about his backwards progress. It has only been 9 days, and he'll soon realize I am not taking him back to THAT place!

                      More GREAT news - farrier is willing to travel the additional time to come do B for his next trim, and will then decide if he can do it regularly. He is booked solid, but has been a staunch supporter of us. A great guy with an exceptional reputation. Was one who knew what was going on, that helped keep me treading water.

                      Oh, and by the way, I am so impressed with this new barn owner. She has only owned horses for 2 years, but has such common sense and patient perseverance. She has the makings of an excellent horsewoman, and is a nice person to boot. I plan on being here for a lonnnng time.

                      Originally posted by stolen virtue View Post
                      Well, I actually rode the baby this morning....he was so great. His canter had been a little rough when I rode at the dressage barn, but today it was so balanced and when I asked him to soften he did.
                      I actually got to hack in the ring with my own horse !! He is loving the barn and all of the people. He is not fidgety he is relaxed, and he listens to me. Wow, when your horse is happy it shows, he was never like this at the last two barns.
                      SV, I guess B is not confirmation of your theory, although I believe when he's been here long enough, we'll truly find his best - which I know is in there! So happy to hear you enjoying yours! Sorry you've been sick. The Red Bull mention makes me laugh. My son is visiting this weekend, and says they call him "Red Bull John" at work.

                      Originally posted by mortebella View Post
                      I'm a little late to the party, and it sounds like you've got you're situation well resolved by now, but I just wanted to second your instincts about groundwork with the green horse and working on your own, etc.

                      But I KNOW I'd never have gotten there w/o TONS of ground work. And there's tons more in the future too. Just be judicious, is what I'd say. Figure out your particular horse's mind - or just be very observant about what he's telling you - and ground work is a VERY valuable tool in your tool kit. I'm firmly convinced it lets the horse bond with you; it lets him see into your mind too.
                      Mortebella - so agree with you and love your observations. It certainly is a challenge having all those "years since", and a green horse. But I also think we aren't perhaps prejudiced as so many have been about TBs in recent years? And am I ever a ground work believer!

                      Originally posted by jaslyn1701 View Post
                      WE DID IT!!!

                      What a ground covering trot he has! Then it happened, without my asking, he broke into the canter -

                      Finn was so proud of himself - after he was untacked, hosed, etc. and tied to the trailer eating hay, every time I got near him, he nuzzled me with his nose as if to say, I did good today, didn't I mom!!!!

                      You sure did!
                      Originally posted by jaslyn1701 View Post
                      Just when I thought I couldn't be prouder of my good boy from Sunday, today's mail brought me a ribbon!!!!! A nice pink 5th place ribbon for the 5 mile pasture fit ride from last Sunday!!!!
                      Jaslyn, this sounds like a blast. So happy you had such a good time, and the canter to boot!!

                      Originally posted by bumknees View Post
                      Just when it seemed Id be able to ride again I went to put on my paddock boot ad GGghhaaa I couldnt get it on at all.. My foot was still at least 3x's the size it should be...

                      it seems Im going ot have surgery on my spine to fix another problem Yeah Im so lucky.
                      Oh, bumknees - am so sorry about all the stuff you've had to deal with! How frustrating...

                      Opus - I love hearing about Oliver - what a doll, love hearing about the canter, and oops - glad he didn't run off w/ that saddle dangling!

                      dreamin' - one thing after another! Toby's ok, and now you get to do the barn clique ignore dance. Hope it's relatively minor. Hope you're feeling better soon.

                      Pony4me - isn't it great when you can turn lemons into lemonade? You'll soon be able to hand out your "rehab specialist" shingle!

                      HazelG - congrats on your son - hope you're doing swimmingly as well!

                      Tarheel - here's to as much riding as possible, and as few issues as possible. Hope you're feeling better. B has a "lump" under his girth - I need a fleece, elastic end one on him. But seems to be just one and nothing new since I've had him. Hope the laser gets it done.

                      Overthemountaindog - wow, you've moved right along! good luck with your nice mellow guy!

                      iechris - congrats on your accomplishment - something I need to work on...

                      Well, taken a bit to write this, but it does feel great being out from under the nonsense I've dealt with for the past 8 months. Was an exceptionally absurd scenario and I thank all of you for your gracious support. Yea I would wish it on my worst enemy - but feel sorry for those who are involved in their insidious mess. I may very well run into old BO from time to time. I know her from other things she is involved with in her outside profession. Am sure she will be very pleasant to me away from the barn. But I can almost compare this to a relationship with an abusive guy - on the outside they may look charming and extremely competent. But you know what they're really like at home. Gah!

                      I'm free! I'm free! And so is B!!!
                      But he thought, "This procession has got to go on." So he walked more proudly than ever, as his noblemen held high the train that wasn't there at all. H.C.Anderson


                      • I am so happy for CVpeg!!


                        • Sorry, I've been away for a little too. I'm a early childhood special ed. teacher and the end of the year is INSANE with meetings, field trips, planning, etc. I can't even describe this past week. I love my job, but this week has been so stressful ... and then when I can't get to the barn, it makes it worse!

                          Opus/iechris - awesome for both of you! Opus, I think I had the same thoughts running through my head when Toby picked up his right lead on the first try out in the field yesterday. That lead has been such a fight for us and when he got it on the first try, I was like "woohoo!!" Keep it up and soon cantering is going to be second nature (though it does never seem to stop being fun!).

                          bumknees - I'm so sorry to hear your break and your surgery . I know my doctor said I could expect swelling for months, even 1+ year with my tib/fib breaks so I know where you're coming from. Fitting tall boots has been an adventure! Did I read right that your boy is named Toby too? What breed? Details? I have a copper-colored chestnut OTTB, 15.3hh gelding with the barn name Toby! I'm always interested when I find ones with the same name!

                          Tarheel - Do you know what causes the sarcoids? I've never seen them, but I am always looking to educate myself on equine health (especially since mine seems a tad bit accident/illness prone!). For the "hair-do" issue at the dock, have you tried MTG? It is messy/smelly, but I found it very helpful with a coat bald spot my gelding had and I'm currently applying it to the tail to help with some growth since he pulled out a bit over the winter. So far, so good. I know some people can't stand the stuff though (I wear disposable gloves when using it so I don't smell!).

                          CVPeg - I could not help but smile all the way through your post! So much good stuff happening for you! I'm sure B's behavior is just him settling in and getting used to and comfortable with his new place. How wonderful he must feel with so much room to stretch! I think it is absolutely wonderful that you can have a partnership with the BO too. Amazing - a drama free barn! Who knew those places existed? I am so happy for you!

                          I'm sure I missed an update somewhere, but so much happened in such a short time. I hope everyone is well ... or at least on the mend!


                          • CVPeg-I am actually taking a break from COTH but I had to post in response to your good news. Pony4me knows the story.

                            So today the baby was a bit of a handfull spooking and jumpy-just like at the old barn. His canter was still soft and slow when I finally got there to canter him, it just takes time and CVPeg, he was at the home barn a year ago for 2 months before being banished to the training barns.So he has a bit more history at the home barn. He also needs time to settle in the cross ties, he likes the whole experience so I have come to learn.

                            I am so happy that you are in a happier place CVPeg, really we have horses for the joy not the drama.

                            Also, a big happy Mothers Day for all of the horse mommies ! Sometimes we have two footed babies and when life is really special we have the four footed babies ! Enjoy all, life is good, atleast when we are riding....


                            • CVPeg - so glad your new barn is working out so well! I am sure that once he's acclimated to his new environment, he'll be more cooperative again. Sounds like you are doing everything right. Good luck Tuesday with your lesson.

                              stolen virtue - hope your COTH break is good, and that we'll get an update when you get back on the BB. You'll be missed while you're gone.

                              dreaminOTTB - the sarcoids are caused by a virus, similar to HPV (but from some sort of bovine source originally). So, basically, my poor horse has a mutation on an STD! HA! I think horses with the virus are generally exposed as youngsters, when their immune systems are lower.
                              Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson


                              • Original Poster

                                Hi all! Hope you've had great weekends, Happy Mother's Day to the moms on here! My Mother's Day has been kind of uneventful. Hubby made breakfast and then cleaned the kitchen (woo!!!!). Then took Kiddo to Pappy's house to go fishing. I went back to bed and took a nap around noon. I'm pathetic! But I had a really lousy night's sleep and I NEED alot of sleep. I hoped to ride but there's still time. Currently eating wine and cheese in bed and reading COTH!

                                I'm kind of freaking out because Devon Lead Line is in 2 weeks and the pony hasn't shed out yet! I might give him a bath tonight to help loosen up that hair. Thankfully its been in the 80's during the day so I'm hoping he gets sweaty enough to let some of it go. And I've been using a shedding blade on him every day. Its patchy - Neck and chest are good, back is good, but belly and butt and head are still hairy. And legs, but that's easy enough to fix.

                                Rode the horses yesterday. Leasie was ok, he's getting a little buddy sour so that's an issue, but hopefully once I'm off from work (1 week! YAY!) and I can ride more that will be a thing of the past.

                                Hope everyone is doing well!!!


                                • Hi all- trying to catch up, since I've been MIA for a while. I've decided to sell JJ, quite sadly. After working out his physical issues, he just isn't the right horse for me after all. He really needs a more regular program to stay calm, and he knows I'm not confident enough to make him 100% behave, so the bucking continues with me. He's a fantastic horse for more confident people, and he did wonderfully yesterday when taking photos and video for his ad.

                                  If any of you Georgia people might know someone who'd be interested, let me know! Here's his ad: http://www.equine.com/horses-for-sal...d-2134720.html. He's incredibly brave, loves to jump and has lovely gaits. His jumping is a bit rusty only because he really hasn't been jumping over 2' with me, but he is so willing to jump whatever is put in front of him. He just needs practice! He has so much potential.

                                  Jumping video will be up there soon, as soon as YouTube cooperates with me and finishes posting it.

                                  I am very sad about this decision, but after a lot of soul-searching, I am convinced it's the right one. BIG SIGH.
                                  Blog chronicling our new eventing adventures: Riding With Scissors


                                  • Original Poster

                                    Painted, I'm sorry you've come to this, but if you are anything like me, after the initial pain goes away, you will feel free. I was so sad deciding to get rid of Dublin but after he was gone, I was ok with it. And there are so many horses out there that will fit your needs, better for both of you to find your perfect matches!


                                    • Sorry Painted Hunter - I have not been in your position, but I can imagine it is very difficult. It sounds like spacytracy knows what you are going through, and you can take solace in her experience.

                                      I am sure the right horse is out there waiting for you! And that JJ's right owner is out there looking for him.
                                      Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson


                                      • Original Poster

                                        I definitely felt like a big fat failure, but at the end of the day, I want to have FUN riding and have a horse that will be the same regardless. Lucky is for sure that horse for me. Every other horse I've had has not been able to do that. If only he was a hand taller! Oh well. I think this year we'll try jumpers.


                                        • CVPeg, absolutely on the TB's I'm probably not quoting George Morris just exactly right, but what is he says? "They're lighter, smarter, and faster than any other horse out there." And he means it as a good thing. And so do I. There's two or three on the Maker's Mark Secretariat Center I'd grab right now if I had the budget for them.
                                          Blog: The Continuing Adventures of an (ahem) Mature Re-Rider without a Trust Fund...but, finally, A Farm of Her Own!!