Sunday, May 11, 2008

Week...what week is this?...update...

Obviously my head must have connected harder than I'd thought. I'm not sure which week we're in anymore. I missed last weeks...I think this is 9, right?

Well, whatever.

The past couple of weeks have seen growth as well as set backs. Obviously, my unintentional dismount would be the set back. Thankfully, however, I've managed to climb back on and continue riding, even though I admit to feeling a wee bit shaky over the whole situation. As I sit here today pondering the next few weeks and all that needs to be done, I know that the only solution is for me to just cowboy up, as Jay says, and put it all out there on the line. No fear. That's what it's got to be.

Yesterday Curt had some visitors stop in for a visit and to see Tangy's foal. To get to the back barn, they had to walk through the arena while I was riding. This is the first distraction Sandy has had while I've been on him. He really struggles to keep his mind on me when there are so many other things out there. I know that's typical of young horses, but he's more so than the others; even Sunny focused on me, despite her fears. I think Sandy may be a little ADD. Combine easily distracted with fear and you end up with a slightly Nervous Horsewife, unfortunately. And that only compounds the problem. I think I've gotten too old for this. Too many years have gone by without falling off a colt and I find myself more jittery than I recall when climbing back on board.

However, despite tensing up a bit, raising his head to look and the desire to stop, I kept Sandy trotting circles and focusing on me, while Jay held up his end of the deal and talked me down off that mental ledge and kept me focused on the task at hand. Sometimes I'm as easily distracted as Sandy. This weeks plan is to go solo in the arena. Deep down in the recesses of my little brain I can hear Darling's voice saying, "Good luck with that." Yeah...really.

Now, for Sandy's progress report:

1) Rode solo in the round pen

2) Fell off solo in the round pen (hey, gotta get him broke, right?)

3) Draped a jacket through the stirrup and let him snort around in circles until he could care less. (No, the next step is not to fall off and get drug.)

4) Visited with livestock and let them blow cow snot into the ear and stick their wet noses under the tail.

5) Crossing bridges without batting an eye.

6) Trotting serpentines in the arena.

Aside from that, it's just the same old stuff. Learning to stand for saddling, perfecting the bit going in and out of the mouth, trying not to snort at the person who brings the feed... I wish some folks would get brave enough to lead him around the place as he could use that. This coming weekend he'll be in for a big shock as we head to Spokane for Ride the West. Lots of people and distractions. Should be interesting!


Rising Rainbow said...

Oh....good plan! I guess I didn't realize that Sandy was going too. That should help desensitize him some.

You are coming along great! Oh.....and just for the record, don't ask me what week it is....I can't even remember what day it is!

Callie said...

Good luck to you. It is hard to get past that mental block after being dumped. I'm still working on it after two years. Especially on an aging body, not that yours is aging, but mine. Kudos for getting back on. It is tough!

Kathy C said...

Look at it this way, if he was going to get spooked and have hit the dirt, at least it was at Curt's and not at the competition. Right? (fingers crossed)

You are doing SO well. I am most impressed with the fact that you are moving slow enough that he can gain trust in you in increments, and you are keeping what's good for him in mind.

Great Job!

Tracey said...

Thank you, ladies, for your votes of confidence! And Callie, yes, my body is aging as well, lol!

It is a head game, isn't it? Pushing that nagging fear out of your mind is difficult. Kind of like when you think about breathing, then you can't breath without thinking about it. I need to just settle down and ride and not think.

I am taking it slow with him, though. Sandy's going to make a terrific family horse next summer, but not this year. If he had Jet's personality, he'd be willing and able to go...but that's just not who he is. It could be that in a few weeks he's moving really well for me, but the trust issue is going to be a big hang up for the next person. No point in pushing him into something he's not ready for and creating an illusion of what he isn't, right?

Katee said...

I'm really sorry to hear about your crash. I know that you'll make the right decision for yourself and Sandy as the clock tick, tick, ticks away. Just be invited to participate and getting a mustang to this event is proof that you are something special Ms Horsewife! You've already won.

Pony Girl said...

That is so good you have Jay there to help talk you through the jitters. The fact he ran back to you after you ate dirt just shows he really wasn't throwing you to be rid and done with you! He seemed to be just as surprised and shoken up. I really like that you realize Sandy needs more time and you are doing the right thing to bring him around in a manner that will benefit him in the long run.