The birthday marathon season is almost over and I managed to put in three solid day s on the horses - after two weeks off.
It started predictably - Lily acting as if she's never been out of a barn in her life, Smokey acking like a 900 pound toddler. Fortunately I recognize these things as part of who they are, not some sort of alarming trend.
It made me think of what it is our horses need from us and how it can be so different with each horse.
Lily, for example, as solid as she is, has a thing with worry. She tries to please but if you start to worry, she takes it and runs with it. She needs assurance, emotional assurance, from her rider. I can canter her around an arena, but when a young girl gets on her Lily feels the girl's worry and progressively gets chargy.
I get back on her and she exhales. And we go into a gentle lope, no problem.
Smokey, on the other hand, needs me to be focused and pretty stern. He is like a butterfly, wanting to flit from thing to thing. Our Sunday session fell apart a bit, and while I cobbled it back together, I realized that I need to remember to work on one thing at a time. And if it's not the day to work on it (when he gets frustrated) to refocus myself and work on plan B with the same strict attention to detail.
It's no accident that I have two horses that are so soft to the touch that I need to pay attention to details. This is exactly the kind of sense of humor God has always had with me. I had said I didn't mind waiting to have our second baby, but I didn't want to be changing diapers on my 40th birthday.
Mireya, our second child was born two months before my 40th birthday. Because SOMEBODY apparently finds these things funny.
So challenging Ms. Big Picture with two horses that are all about details?
Funny. REAL funny.
Cody, he's a horse you could ride all day and basically get away with kick to go, pull to stop. Your legs could flop all over and he'd just go with it. You need no attention to detail with that horse, just a general sense of direction.
But of course I can't have that kind of horse. No, no, no.
Because how would that help me grow?
On another note the trainer asked me to head out for a trail ride. I opted out. There is no way I'm ready after two weeks off. I need some desensitization. Some reintegration time. I finally asked her how long it had been since she'd been on a horse that bolted on a trail with her. She was silent for a minute and admitted it had been a while. It's been a while for me too. but right now, I'm going to do what I can and build my confidence. I'm simply not in a place to dive in. I'm sure she sees a horse that could be doing so much more.
But for me, I just want to work up to it. Maybe in September.