I’ve been riding 5-6 days a week. I’ve also gone a full 2+ weeks without feeling way too anxious or depressed. I’ve been really happy, and I feel like at least 75% of this is because I’ve been riding 5-6 days a week and also got to get away from craziness for a week. (here’s looking at you, Florida.) I hopped on Red bareback on Tuesday after free lunging for about 5 minutes to make sure he’d be calm, because I was really in the mood for a relaxed ride and some fun trot work. I have no media of this, other than some quick behind the ear shots, but it was my first time to hack him around bareback without someone eyeballing us (I’m a wimp, a huge wimp, when it comes to bareback on my horse, because the only times i’ve ever had a fall was bareback, and I’ve also had a couple other close calls.) in a long, long, long time, and that ride, man, it made me happy. Let’s just say he was fabulous, I mean, he jogged around the round pen great, I let him stop after seeing he was definitely not crazy at that moment, and I stood next to the mounting block to get my stuff ready and he literally walked up to it, placed himself properly next to it and was ready for me to mount. I mean, seriously. I got my bridle on him, and I froze. I stood there and put my leg up on him at least 4 times and then I pulled it off, thinking to myself, “Oh gosh, what if he moves, what if he bolts with me and I fall, what if I throw myself off the other end somehow, ohgoshohgoshohgosh” and then I told myself to shut up and literally jumped on him as quickly as possible, and hey, I’m alive. He stood there, and I was all smiles from then on. These are all small battles, but after everything that’s gone on, me losing confidence in so many ways, they are big victories.
He was so good, so happy, so relaxed, just went with the flow and did everything I asked of him. He jogged the nicest he ever has and was so so nice. We did some extended trot, did quite a few laps around the round pen and up and down the little road leading up to our hay field, and it was great. He joined up when I got off and walked back with me to the farm, total gentleman.
He got Wednesday off because I have church in the evenings and I’m always very busy and have no time other than to feed, squeeze in a quick brush down for Jubilee and Red and scramble out of there. I got back on him bareback yesterday, in hindsight, I wish I had of tacked him up because he needed to blow off some steam. I tried to mount, he tried to take a tiny step but I reminded him that I need him to be 100% still, I made him flex and I got on and he was fine. Pretty stubborn, but not really bad. Just not listening his best. We did a few laps around the round pen, then I let him trot it out. He was very rushed and pushing to either go faster or just not go at all. I did a few circles, worked on sharpening up some turns, and kept him moving, and we did end on a good note. He really just needed to be tacked up and worked. It didn’t help that I was crampy and very nauseated (thanks mother nature) and my little niece was running and yelling and the cat kept trying to jump under his feet.
There at the end he was pretty settled, and he let me lay all over him and do whatever, so I count that as a good ride too.
Depending on how quickly i get dinner thrown together and how hot it is when we go to feed, I plan on tacking him up and doing some actual work in the round pen. Maybe some canter as long as he’s not being super fresh.