Well, here we go again... New horse, new barn, new story. I am excited, but a little nervous. I feel like I need to be some amazing rider, but after being self taught for so long now and being so out of shape, it is hard. It will take time and it will be hard work, but it will all be worth it in the end, I'm sure.
I got so used to riding lazy, dead-head horses. It is kind of sad. My legs are used to having to kick every step and have a very forward seat. Cat... Well, she is a bit different. Actually, she is a lot different, but not in a bad way necessarily. She has spunk and fire, something I'm not used to. I don't think I have ever ridden a horse like her. She was lunged for probably about 15 or 20 minutes before I got on. She is balanced to say the very least. She was cutting close enough for me to poke her hinny with the whip while trotting. Silly girl thought I was trying to nom-nom-nom her butt.
Getting on wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. It took me a minute, but thanks to her owner holding her, I did get on within a few minutes. I just get so nervous about it. I worry about what might happen; what if she takes off, what if I fall off; it's all just what if. I wish I could just relax and stop worrying about it so much. It has almost been two years for Christ's sake! Oh well, I will get over it in time.
I got on and Cat was ready to go, once I was up in the saddle she started trotting. Unfortunately her owner shortened the stirrups and I felt like a fricking jockey. I was super off balance and felt like if she were to take off I would for sure be taking an unplanned dismount. So I made her walk back to her "mom" and we lengthened my stirrups to her length, which was still too short. I didn't say anything and just rode with those short stirrups. They were jumping length for me, if not a hole too short for that even. Next ride I will defiantly lengthen them two holes.
Cat just wanted to trot-trot-trot. She was ready to work and was not happy having to walk around a whole bunch. But it was windy and she can be a bit spooky at times. So we walked around for a bit. I am used to having my reins way too long, but with her, they were beyond short (for me anyways). That's okay though, it was something I needed to fix.
Her trot is so much fun. It was pretty fast, but she had a lot of energy built up. Due to snow she hasn't had turnout for a few days, plus with her owner pregnant she is only being ridden once in a blue moon. Like I said, she started out pretty fast, but after she relaxed (and I relaxed) we got into a nice trot. We will have a lot to work on before being ready for any shows, but that's the fun; we get to work hard so we can go to shows and see our hard work pay off.
She was crow hopping a little at the trot acting like she wanted to canter, so I pushed her into it. ****! That's all I have to say about her canter. Well actually, when I really asked her to canter, it took us three tries to actually pick up the correct lead. I guess the phrase is true, third time's a charm. Her canter is really fast and I got really defensive (riding position wise).
We will work on a lot more our next ride. Every ride is a chance to improve, which is exactly what I intend on doing.
I don't know if you guys have ever had a horse lick your hand, but I find it to be therapeutic. And Cat is a licker. Her owner pointed out how she thinks it's funny, the little things people notice... Hmm, maybe that's why I like Cat so much. My second horse, Rhedd, would lick me for half an hour if I let him. He would lick away my tears when I would cry and would lick my forehead to make me laugh. That is probably why I find it to be so... Relaxing? No, well yes, but not the exact word I am looking for. The best word has to be therapeutic.
Anyways, I am going back next Sunday to ride her. I can't wait! My dad was surprised I enjoyed her so much. He didn't want to come and watch me ride after I told him she can be a little spooky because he was worried I was going to fall off (last time he saw me fall was when I obtained my mounting fear). It was quite adorable. He is always worried about me falling off and being put in a wheel chair. He got really uptight when I told him she is spooky and doesn't stand perfectly for mounting. Like I told him, I will never grow as a rider if I don't push myself and ride challenging horses.
So I will update you guys again next weekend! I am going to ride her a few more times and if things work out okay we will be signing a lease contract.
Here are a few of the minimal pictures I have of her. They aren't from today and they don't show even 5% of how beautiful she is. I will try to get some more next time I go out to ride her.