Today did not go as planned. When will I realize that that is how it always goes. If I planned every day to not go according to plan, what would happen? Would things run ever so smoothly? Would all of my rides be calculated and forward moving along the learning scale? Would my darling horse behave himself as if I were his favorite human whom he loved and wanted to please as if his life depended upon it? It sounds like a nice idea….but who really wants predictable? Predictable is boring………and do you really learn anything?
Today I fell off of Rhyland for the first time ever. Wait, I take that back. I fell off of him the first time while we were standing still waiting for my Kate to jump her horse over a little tiny log. Her horse celebrated on the landing side of the little tiny log and Kate came off. Her horse fled the scene in Rhyland’s general direction. Rhyland proceeded to squeal like a little girl and spin hard left to avoid any confrontation with the “terrifying, 20 year old, schoolmaster, mare”. I found myself butt-down in the tall weeds. That was my first fall off of Rhyland.
My second fall off of Rhyland happened today. Less than 24 hours before we were scheduled to leave for the show. Fantastic. It happened over a crossrail. Even more fantastic. Nothing like a humongous wake up call over the smallest fence in the universe to bring about a little attention to the riding position. For some reason…could it be the crazy way he flails between fences, or the way he leaps off of his front end to challenge the martingale, or the way he barges to the fences claiming to be a superstar jumper in a greener than snot body, that has caused me to lose a little bit of my classical riding style? On more than one occasion I have seen my life flash before my eyes……so, yes….I may jump ahead every now and again. Today was one of those days, and on the 3rd or 4th time over the warm up crossrail, I found myself jumping ahead, and then he stopped—HARD. I then found myself in the sand. Nice. I promptly dusted myself off, grabbed my obnoxious horse, and got back on. Knowing full well that he had just reminded me a most valuable lesson. Thank you, Rhyland for dumping my butt in the sand and reminding me to sit up and wait on your highness to jump. Thank you for allowing me to be the student and not the teacher. Thank you for having this “teaching moment” at home and not at the show this weekend. I appreciate it.
The next time I cantered down to the crossrail I was sitting up and waiting for him. This time he threw in another NASTY stop, but I was sitting up and ready for it. I whacked him on the shoulder, and that was the end of the stopping. Oh, he was still his obnoxious self, but he went over the fences without hesitation.
I walked away from my ride with two thoughts…..
I am soooooo glad he made me aware of my position issues today
Predictable is for sissies.