Resolutions for the horses

6 Jan

Must make and KEEP riding goals.

I have been actively riding since returning from our TN failure. I was actively riding prior to (attempting) to move to TN. I then became stagnate while in TN, which I blame on the environment (it is very hard to keep the desire to enjoy life when surrounded by so much ridicule).

I’ve been riding practically daily – weather pending… oh yeah, and the two falls I took kept me aching for a few days.

For Ms. Stella… My love. My “daughter.”
1. to over come my new jumping fears (thanks to crashing). We must just shut up and jump it! And, once I am confident enough to go back to 3ft, I will head back to the show ring. My nerve has been shaken drastically. Who would have thought that a spill over such a small fence would set me back into 18″ of pony club? It has been over two weeks since my crash. Touching my knee sends agony throughout my body, usually resulting a few cuss words. I trotted her over some 2ft Xs Monday. Just have to keep learning from my mistakes. JR told me that I need to go back to NOLA and let my old coach drill some nerve into my spineless backbone. He’s probably right. As usual. He agrees, though, that I have spent too much time and money on lessons and training over the past couple of years to let a little slip up keep me from enjoying my mare the way I had intended.

Little does the husband understand, that crashing on your head as a gallop and pretty much destroying the entire left side of your body resonates past the muscle and into the dark, discouraging voices into your brain.

For the past two weeks, all I have heard those pesky inner voices say is “Oh shit! You’re going to crash!”

For TC, my new friend who has become one of the best parts of my day. 
1. Since TC is retired from jumping anything of height but still obviously loves the thrill, I want to continue to let him enjoy retirement, but want to incorporate some little 2fters into our workout. I have never really taken him over anything. His x-rays are clean, as I understood it, but there is risk that, if he lands the wrong way, he will re-injure himself. Since he obviously loves trotting over caviletties and cantering over little Xs, it will be nice to give that to him. However, I have noticed that he loves doing this so much so that he becomes quite “hot.” Even when he and I are working and I have my fences set up from Stella, he just SEES the fences and becomes excited. So, we will work on relaxing and keeping an “I’m retired, therefore, let’s enjoy it one stride at a time” frame of mind. Circles. Transitions. Trotting. Pats on the neck. And “good boy!”

Cali… the wonder pony.
If we do KEEP Cali…
1. My goal is to ride him more then once a month, which is, honestly, better then prior years. In 2009, I think he was ridden twice. In 2010, probably six times. I’d like to eventually move him up into a weekly ride. No particular reason other then I have a good, little horse that isn’t doing anything other then eating. He needs a job.

At the same time, lack of riding is the reason Cali is up for sale. He’s gentle. He has a great disposition. However, as a mother to three, a grad student, a husband who is working on his certification and the owner of two primary mounts, Cali is mostly overlooked. He has become the pasture’s bastard stepchild. I pat him on the head. Feed him. And ride his friends. I would honestly prefer to sell him, since time is such an issue. But I will keep my promise to ride him more consistently until a final decision has been made.

We have owned Cali since 2003. My husband picked him out. I’m not entirely sure why. He isn’t a “pretty” horse by any means. He has a horrid trot, but a lovely canter. I started him as I did Stella – as anyone with an OTTB would. Slowly. The husband rode him from time to time – mostly trails. My trainer at the time liked him, citing that he had terrific shoulders and would make a fine low fences hunter.

Then I started back with school.
Then we adopted our second child (first adoption, second child).

Two children. School. Two horses (No TC at the time). Too much.

My babysitter started trail riding him. She loved Cali unconditionally. In hindsight, I should have given Cali to her. They were quite the pair. But, as things often do, life changed. My babysitter’s mother and I had a disagreement over something unrelated to both horses and kids. My babysitter was no longer my sitter. Cali no longer had a pal. He was pastured and stayed that way for the second half of 2005 and first part of 2006.

In the summer of 2006, I wanted to pull him out of the pasture. Darling husband began to express interest in his little steed once again. Afraid of the stewing energy within the tiny thoroughbred, I elected to send him off to a trainer for 60 days. He came back, refreshed and reschooled. Ready to be ridden. Sadly, once again, husband lost interest. And, as usual, I was busy with Stella (and now had three children). Back to the pasture he went.

Since then, he has been ridden purely as a fun, trail riding pony. I take him out with my girlfriends and their fat quarter horses and we hit the country side. As you can imagine, this doesn’t happen often. Cali usually finds himself on the sidelines, watching his lady love, Stella, getting all of the attention. And it isn’t fair. So yes, if a new home opportunity comes about, he will go, deservingly.

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