My Friday lesson is still haunting me. 8:30 am with Emma.
She asks what I want to work on that day with a laugh. That's what I love about this group- the courses are always tricky and the exercises technical. But for me? I get to pick what I want to work on- and news flash- it's crossrails. Again. So we start weaving a pattern together and no joke, if this were the Hunter Derby of Crossrails, Ellie and I would have won. Every distance came up beautifully, Ellie was balance and happy, we were clicking in a way we hadn't before.
Could I be satisfied with that? Some days- yes! But today there was a pink flowered vertical set against the rail that called my name like a sirens song. We trotted it a few times before I asked Emma to raise the rail to 2'3". This is my game- I love the long ride to a single fence. We got this!
Actually. No. No we did not. Or should I say, I did not have game that day. In blurry video 1. we see Ellie and I riding a great pace towards the fence. 4 strides out I didn't see anything and rather than sit like a patient rider and wait......I kicked her forward shouting something like "LET'S GO FIND IT." In my head.
In video 2. we actually did wait and I would take the chip any day. Ells came to us having been rushed to fences a bit- and while she is game for the long distance- the trainers would like to see her sit back a bit. Hence the - DO NOT CHASE IT IS A MORTAL SIN.
Video 2.5- wait- there isn't a 2.5. That's because I chased her down to a long distance that had her drop a rail (hang head in shame).
So a well deserved video 3- where she shakes her hoof at me and lets me know she's had enough! Actually I think I worried her to the point where she no longer wanted to jump the fence. After her run out we trotted it one last time and called it a day.
Why is it still bugging me? It's amazing how quickly ones confidence can rise only to be shattered- I KNOW I will be thinking about that fence going into our Thursday lesson. Also- I really really don't want to ruin my young horse. I know this single sequence isn't going to cause major ongoing issues- but it's the lack of body control that worries me. In my mind I'm saying- "wait for it dummy!" But my body is reacting out of fear.
I think the best action I can take right now is to stay in my comfort zone. Build our confidence together over crossrails and 18" fences. When I get the urge to jump up- I need to jump another crossrail course perfectly. Three times in a row.
And know that I won't be perfect. Ellie won't be perfect. And we both need to develop a sense of humor about the whole thing. Because we? Are going to be awesome.