I'm kinda like that mouse.
Carmen and I have been slowly building our relationship. Sometimes there are failures in communication- either because I'm not being clear or because her attention is elsewhere. But with the tools I have now, I can ALWAYS get her back. There have been no real scary moments in weeks.
Now we can get to the real fun I have to keep myself grounded. We work on transitions, I've introduced the trotting poles and it's helping her stretch out her stride. I'm doing more with the leg yielding. She struggles with keeping straight when going to the left but it's getting better.
I've been taking her out of the ring more and more. I ride her up to the ring and now am taking her down after. Yesterday I rode her down to the barn, between the barn and garage and down the driveway, past the green bin and over by Steele's grave. She gave a big jump- Ed was doing something with the recyclables. I called to him so that she could hear him. It took a few calls before he heard. As soon as she heard his voice she realaxed. We walked over and I took her up by the lawn chairs and around the garage. She wasn't sure but when we got to the garden Ed fed her some carrots and she thought that was all right.
I realized that I'm getting picky about her leg yields and listening when out of the ring when a month ago I couldn't reliably get her around the ring -she would either bolt or refuse to move ahead.
With that reality check in hand I allowed myself to appreciate where we were and not sweat where we weren't.
Today Cynthia came out and Carmen started off being very distracted in the far end of the ring. I had to work very hard to get her to change her mind about where her attention should be but I kept insisting and I finally had her with me. Then we could work on things. Her leg yields were much better. Later in the ride Irish gave a big spook right in front of us and she reacted. But as soon as I asked she came back to me and didn't worry about Irish. And then we walked right by what had startled Irish. There was a time when that would have derailed everything. We finished by cantering all along the ring- even into the spooky corners.
At the end of the ride I dropped the gate and we walked down. At the barn we headed down the driveway with Carmen leading and then down to the bottom of the field. I took my time and felt out how she was. I didn't have an agenda in mind. At the far end of the field I asked Cynthia to lead us through the gate and then we turned around and Carmen led us out. I was very proud of her. We walked up to the barn. I took her over by the garden where I dismounted and fed her a carrot.
I'm wondering if I should consider going to the show at the beginning of September....
|I want more of this view.|