|the grass is starting to turn green!|
Blogland has become very quiet. And it makes sense- clinics and shows are cancelled. Many are unable to see their horses because barns have closed their doors. That makes sense- it's important that the people working at the barns are safe and able to care for the horses. What is more disturbing is that others are being harassed for continuing to ride. I get it- riding is a risk and do we want more stress on a health system that is already stressed? All that to say that I have made the decision to continue to ride. I am always making careful decisions whether Carmen feels safe and I trust my gut. I'm not trying to justify it- it's just the decision I have made and am comfortable with.
|if this doesn't describe 2020 I don't know what does|
And I'm not gonna lie- I worry that others may think that I'm gloating over my good fortune. I know that I'm not and that will have to do. I can't worry about what others think-probably they aren't thinking about me at all.
Without the push of upcoming clinics, lessons and shows I have been going slow. I'm enjoying the lack of pressure- even though I know that the only one putting pressure on me was me. Sigh.
Every spring I start back with Carmen and wait for her to begin to lose her crap over stuff. And this year it's sort of the same. There's breeze, waving grasses and, god forbid, happy, horny, noisy birds flitting about everywhere. But it's also not the same-I have been working on our goal of increasing her confidence (and mine). And it's working.
|spring means shedding and I looked down to see all|
her hair making little dandelion fluffs.
Our ground work is aimed at starting her off calm and loose. I start that work from the moment I get her from the pasture. It's cute to see her get tight and as soon as I touch her neck she goes oh right, relax. Phew. Under saddle I ask her to bend and soften and I don't fall into the trap of her worry.
We've been playing with moving her weight back onto her hindquarters and using her core. We've been doing a lot of poles.
|A puzzle I set up|
We have been playing with Travers and Renvers (haunches in/haunches out) and she's doing well with those. Carmen is quite happy to look out of the ring, it's having to be carrying herself in balance that was mind blowing for her. I can feel my half-halts really working on bringing her balance back.
Anyway, I'm hoping to keep picking away at our second level stuff so that when things do resume we're ready. But what is most telling about our work is that, no matter where we start, she always end feeling relaxed and content. Honestly, she is the most mellow horse and you wouldn't recognize it. And it's not from exhaustion because she's barely sweaty.
|No she's not exhausted, just mellow,|
also do you notice something? No flash. :)
I kinda thought Shelter In Place would create some more blog activity but didn't realize that maybe people wouldn't have much to blog about, or would be busy with their families and any other myriad of things popping up (just that they'd have more time to do so lol).ReplyDelete
Some of us are writing more than ever, but it's not about horses. The problem with equestrian blogging is that if bloggers aren't able to ride or see their horses, their subject matter is gone. Some of us are also just living in a weird parallel universe from the WFH peeps because we're out still working in the real world clocking in more hours than ever, while dancing around the invisible enemy that is this virus. It's exhausting. I'm writing about that reality on the new blog, but it's not a reality that most people want to read about. *shrug*Delete
I think that the emotional aspect of this impacts as well. I am fortunate to work from home and am working harder than ever. But I am in awe of those who continue to go to work and deal with the work and the anxiety that comes from that.Delete
Yeah I was definitely speaking about Equestrian Blogging in particular because that is primarily what I read. I'm sure also the Mommy Blogs have EXPLODED with content with stay at home. But I hate children so I won't read a Mommy Blog.Delete
I like that cavaletti exercise! And yea I feel ya. Strange times. If I were allowed to ride Charlie I probably would. But ya know. Social distancing means busy boarding barns have to change standard operating procedures. The virus loves a crowd lol. Not entirely sure why ppl are so worried about what activities others engage in outside of crowded situations tho, tbh.ReplyDelete
I think when people get frightened they are not always rational. I also think that some, at some level, might resent those who are having 'fun' while they are not.Delete
yea honestly you're probably right about that. and... honestly i feel those pangs of jealousy too. but... idk, it's one thing to feel jealous or disassociated or whatever, and another thing entirely to require that everyone else shares my sacrifice or suffering lol. like, 'if i can't have fun then nobody should have fun!!! grr!!' -- it's just strange...Delete
Teresa, thank you for your posts: they are a welcome distraction right now. <3ReplyDelete
I am glad. :)Delete
I’m glad you are still riding. I’m mostly working in the garden, but also continuing to work with Tex. I think about blogging, but like you said, there isn’t anything new from day to day.ReplyDelete
I would love to have an update about Tex. :) Just sayin'.....Delete
I had hoped to blog more, but I’ve started and deleted blog posts—not really knowing what I want to say. I have been riding, too, and training Tweed, but I have also heard people say we shouldn’t ride. Nerves are raw and people are emotional. The horses, however, don’t know anything’s different. Though I am worried I might give it to them, considering those tigers got it from humans. Yikes!ReplyDelete
I can't worry about giving it to the horses because I am their sole caretaker. I haven't really left the property though. Ed is the one going out. We recognize that if he gets it I will get because it's so contagious.Delete
would love to have an update on Tweed.
I'm with LWilliams - surprised it's so quiet. I've been catching up on lots of good riding books and online clinics at home and feel like I have so much to talk about! I've been riding Bridget a little too, like you I feel comfortable with that level of risk. Sophie's on hold though!ReplyDelete
Maybe we need an equestrian book club blog hop....Delete
Yes - there is some blog material for everyone!Delete
Teresa: I'm not a rider, but I do enjoy your posts about your horses, dogs and life on your farm. We all have to figure out routines and what works for us and our responsibilities. Pictures are always nice too. Love the expressions you capture :0ReplyDelete
M in NC
Thank you M. :) I'm glad you enjoy it.Delete
You shouldn't feel guilty for riding! It's just about being safe. Like I probably wouldn't do much jumping right now if I had the opportunity. I chose to stop riding because the only one I had in work was Shiny and she's a known tripper. We did fall in December due to her tripping. So I felt that was an avoidable risk. But if Eros had been in work? I'd probably still ride. Well, that and if he was at my house.ReplyDelete
Anyway, I'm glad things are going well for you two! You've really grown to understand each other well in the last year!
Thanks! I don't feel super guilty- mostly because I believe that guilt is a non-productive emotion.Delete
I too enjoy reading about your adventures with Carmen and to see how far you both have come together. I was surprised to read that some don't approve of people riding horses. I mean, it's dangerous to drive cars too. Much more so than to ride a horse.ReplyDelete
yeah, danger is everywhere. It just may feel frivolous to others.Delete
I'm glad you are still able to ride. I'm slightly jealous that your weather is warm enough to do lots outside most days - ours in not that great at the moment! It is trying to snow right now - how rude!ReplyDelete
I'm all for reading blog updates - it gives me something other than the depressing news to consume!!
It's been a early spring and I'm profoundly grateful. I would be losing my mind if it was still snowy!!! Today it is sunny and in the mid-teens (Celsius).Delete
Sounds like you are on a good path. Love the poles exercise. I've found a great poles FB group and have been doing more poles as well.ReplyDelete
oh I wonder if it's the same one I'm in: Equestrian Pole Club?Delete
That's the one!Delete
Hey there! Happy to see you posting and riding! I am without a horse since three weeks, with probably another 3 weeks to go ... so I live vicariously through you! Please keep posting. I especially love the Carmen translations :-)ReplyDelete
I will check with Carmen to see if she has anything she wants to share. :)Delete
I think a lot of the quiet is concern of getting roasted for riding. I had my first ever nasty comment about the ride I did last week and it surprised me so much that I stupidly replied and then eventually remembered that arguing is pointless and I deleted it.ReplyDelete
But I don't see how riding alone or with one singe other person around is that bad. So keep riding and enjoying yourself. Stressed out, not fit people are more likely to get sick than those who are already healthy and happy.
I agree with you- about arguing and about staying fit and healthy. I also worry about Carmen's weight so this helps her as well. I know I could lunge but it's not the same.Delete
I was surprised to hear that some people are attacking riders for riding. I hadn't even thought of that to be honest. In my opinion you should do anything that makes you happy and de-stress during this time and its also good exercise.ReplyDelete
I love doing poles for exercise with the horses, either lunging or riding. Carmen is looking very mellow these days. Glad you're getting out there and you're both enjoying yourselves.
People who are frightened lash out so I get it. Some may think I'm being irresponsible. Which is okay- I just need to be comfortable with my decisions. I don't need permission.Delete
Yeah I'm with you. Not that I've had anything super exciting, and I can deal with people just being judge-y (my barn manager spoke directly with our county, who concurred that we are allowed to continue riding, and implemented their suggested protocols) but I don't want to trigger anyone who is unable to see their horse.ReplyDelete
"And I'm not gonna lie- I worry that others may think that I'm gloating over my good fortune. I know that I'm not and that will have to do." Yep. This. Sadly, this. I'm getting better about it and will probably share my rides again eventually. It sucks when your personal life choices unrelated to anyone else but you/your family/your job are suddenly under attack.ReplyDelete
I love all of the pole work you're doing with Carmen! And especially that it is helping you both build confidence and trust in one another. I changed the notifications/visibility of those posts from the FB group and love seeing them constantly on my feed. Such a welcome change from so much of the vitriol going around elsewhere on social media. I keep meaning to try some of the exercises/challenges from the page, but I've had other chores to focus on and then it snowed lol.
I saw the snow!! Ugh! You can keep it. We might get a little snow before the end of the month but it is unlikely. The grass is getting greener every day and that makes me so excited.Delete