I get very scared of riding horses which have previously misbehaved with me (think bucking to get me off, running off with me dangerously and rearing. I don't get scared of garden variety horse silliness). And when I say scared, I mean full on anxiety attacks, so much so that I have had to get off certain horses, even if they did nothing on that particular ride. And I've stopped riding some of the horses for good, I just refuse.
However, my instructor got a new horse which was previously used for farm work and driven around her village. As you can imagine, not exactly refined under saddle but got some saddle time.
My instructor has ridden her once, when trying her out in her village and that's it. She asked me if I was up to riding this mare before she had her retrained.
The mare has never been inside an indoor school. I have no idea what possessed me to say yes.
So, here I am, a very untalented, older, nervous novice, leading a green farm mare into a huge indoor school, leading her around all over, leading her over ground poles - she had no idea what those were, obviously. Then I got a plastic bag, sacked her out a bit - she shied somewhat but nothing major.
I got on, and we had a proper lesson, trotting over ground poles (three in a row!) and everything. We just didn't canter. I was amazed at myself. And that little mare is such a brave little thing as well. She also tried hard to do everything I asked. We had a bit of steering trouble on the left hand but my instructor said that's to be expected from working horses.
I am still speechless that I could do that, after I had a lot of trouble with my confidence. I hope I can keep it up.
Thank you all for listening