Mother's Day

I hope everyone had a wonderful mother's day with lots of snuggles and smooches from their kids. Ours was pretty relaxed, mainly, dinner with my mom and family. I snuck off a little early and came back to mess with the horses a little. I didn't have time to ride, but I got MIREE up and worked with her.

We had a wonderful short ride yesterday, and as young as she is, I won't ride her again for a few days. It probably sounds funny, like she's not on a training schedule, but she's not. Not really. But that's the beauty of starting my own colts under saddle, is that I can do it on the horse's schedule. I don't have to answer to the demands that someone wrote in a book, StepOne, StepTwo.... and I don't answer to anyone who's writing a check for me to push their horse along. (although, I have to say, when I was riding other horses, I'm not sure if it was luck, or if I was just hard-nosed enough about it, but I never had anyone try to lean on me to push their horses.)

But the wonderful thing I have found out about riding just a little bit and then giving them time off, is that they tend to think about it all and come back stronger. Miree has been doing well, but still a little unsure under saddle - but yesterday, she was all brass and confidence. A totally difference ride from last week and the rides before. She was steadier on her legs, more sure of her balance with me on-board, lighter in my hands and more responsive. A wonderful and dramatic difference.

So after such a good riding day yesterday, I put on her driving stuff today. We're ground driving and still dreaming of a harness and cart. But, to date, while she's been wearing the bit, she's been driving with the noseband - a kind of hybrid bosal I like to start colts in. Well, today, I went ahead and attached the reins to the bit ... and she went along as if she'd been doing it forever. Of course, she's not 'giving' and 'bending' the way she'll learn to do, but it's simply incredible to be working with a little mare that has so much try and so much heart that she actually reaches out with open communication to figure out what it is the two of you are supposed to be doing.

She tentatively shifts one way, then the other, her entire being focused on mine. Tension and pressure, a frown, mean "that's not it" and softening and praise mean "good girl!" ... and she gives the same tension or softness back to me depending on if I'm being good or bad.

And that's the part that you never hear about when people talk about a partnership with their horse - that a partnership is a two way street. For all that Miree gives, she demands as much. I'm just glad that she's generous and forgiving and willing to work with me and give me the time I need to learn to be her partner.


L.A. Mitchell said...

Hi Sue,
I've bestowed the Blogging With a Purpose award on you! Congrats :)

Here are the original rules(which I loosely altered)

1. Nominate 5 blogs which haven't had this award before
2. Each of the blogs must have a purpose
3. The nominated blogs must make a link back to this page
4. The logo from the award must be put on their blog and it must link back to this blog

Leah Braemel said...

I still think of Miri as a baby, even though I know better. But after reading your posts, I know she's going to be one great horse to ride.