Oh, Theo. The slightest inkling that we might be doing a cross country lesson, he comes out of his field limping and looking pathetic. It's the left front again. It looks like that bruise isn't done making us crazy after all and the granite our state is so famous for got him again. He's back in a stall, gorging on hay, and the farrier will be checking things out again tomorrow. Hoping that it's not an abscess from his shoeless adventures that's deciding to show up now that we have a show coming up.
Horses, huh? Such a predictable hobby.
So mi papi went into a stall after a good brush down and I got out Miss Thang yet again. Today was a flat lesson due to some passing thunderstorms and I threw her dressage saddle on. Trainer A had plans for my stirrups and they didn't involve actually staying on my saddle. It's for the best, I've been in my jump saddle so much lately, but that doesn't mean I'm bouncing with excitement.
Miss Thang is supposed to be learning to be a hunter, so most of her ride was spent being ploppy while I dealt with my continuing efforts to become a dressage queen. It really doesn't matter how far back I lean, it seems I need to get back even further.
But I did have a moment where I actually understood some of what she wanted. She said that she wanted my hips in front of my shoulders, which is what I hear all the time. This time it was described as my hips bouncing up and forward as the horse trots instead of letting my hips bounce back, which will put them behind me. Huh. So I had to get back far enough to let my hips bounce forward instead of bouncing back, which automatically puts my shoulders in front of them. Add this to my previous chacha lesson and I had a couple of moments where I was actually staying in the saddle instead of catching air.
This all sounds crazy, but keep in mind everything is being exaggerated to cope with the fact I'm a recovering hunter rider that feels completely in balance with my derriere stuck out behind me. When I look in a mirror I see that my shoulders are just barely behind my hips, but I feel like that cartoon. But the important part is that I felt what Trainer A wants, so I can start self torturing between lessons. Assuming Theo decides he wants to stop stubbing his toe every time we suggest galloping in the open. Weenie.
We did discuss my idea to chase the Bronze medal, and she's on board. She agrees that Theo can do it, even without the stunning trot. Sure, we'll never be awe inspiring across the diagonal, but I only need that 60% and I get the feeling that his collected work will look very nice when it's ready. We nail a couple of halts, I get my rider's score up, and we'll be in business!