Thursday, August 9, 2012
A New Chapter
There was one person riding a paint while I was tacking up but we ended up with the arena to ourselves.
My first unsupervised ride on her since before her injury. She was relaxed and listening.
We trotted! That active, rhythmic trot which won me over. I called her Dandywine and Leonine and I swear she was admiring herself in the mirrors...maybe we both were a little. She even offered to canter, but not yet. Though she is sound, that leg is still tender. My confidence is still tender. We are in no hurry.
We did transitions with breath alone, as my trainer recently taught me. Breathe in: trot. Breathe out: walk. Exhale again: halt. She responds beautifully to this. It is amazing.
She looks so enormous when I'm standing next to her, but mounted she feels right.
Afterward she followed me while I picked up the mess she had made (mare's metabolism works wonderfully) and I soaked in the clean, organized atmosphere and routine of the place. My name on her stall card. Her turnout companion waiting for her when she got back to her stall so he can continue his adoring uninterrupted gaze through the stall divider. A little hay left in her corner feeder.
As I was untacking her I realized...
This all happened so quickly and not the way anyone would have hoped, but there I was...riding my big bay dressage prospect in a dressage barn. Putting all my things in their place and currying the sweat from a tall mare's back. My tall mare.
The recent chaos has kind of overshadowed the glimmer of a dream coming true. It's all still rather unreal.
I gave her two little peppermint treats and closed her outer stall door. She lives at "E" along the indoor arena. The sun set a gentle pink as I walked to my car. It was a good night.