I’m still plugging away – slowly – on teaching my sweet Isabella about carrying a rider. Have you ever heard those voices in the head, they tell you all the time what you should and should not do, and for me they keep me procrastinating when I feel as if I would like to be riding Isabella; I gotta do the watering first, now I have to go to the bank, well it is kinda hot, and on and on. It’s sure hard to turn those off and go with my positive voice!
Back to Isabella – I had enough gumption to follow the voice that told me that “it might be nice to go out and groom Isabella and maybe play in the trailer (a stickiness that she is getting over) and let her eat some goodies for awhile in the trailer manger” Easy stuff, nothing scary. Pretty soon it was almost as if she were talking to me – “OK, we did that what’s next?” So I thought “a nice walk around the yard”. I took her for a little walk around, we walked by the chickens – BAM! that’s scary – silly gal. We walked in the yard where there is fresh grass growing and a swimming pool – yeow, that was weird! And, to my increasing delight, she comes around back to me so nice and soft like “everything’s OK now “- talking to me, trusting me, getting over those BAM, yeow moments.
Now my voice said “Maybe I’ll work her with the saddle”, so off we go. Again, trust, no issues putting the saddle on tied to to that trailer that was so scary a few weeks ago. My voices are getting even more positive now and I’m not even hearing the negative ones. “Maybe you should take her into the round pen and play a little bit.” That sounded good, so off we go – she’s right with me, I take off the halter she moves out when I ask, trots over the poles that I had forgotten to remove – no big deal.
Woops! A negative voice tried to gain some ground telling me that “that’s good, now put her away, you don’t want to do any more now, now do you!” (not a question, a demand!) I looked that little mare in the eye, and saw that she was asking for more so up in the saddle I climbed. As I’m doing this I have this back and forth dialog “Oh my, be careful!” “This is GREAT!” Oh no, don’t do anything rash!” “This is major GREAT!” and so on. Didn’t last long and off we went, walking around and me breathing and calming my nervous silliness. Now I can’t say I helped her learn much about feeling the rein and taking direction – but I held in there when there was some resistance and by the end of our short session, we both were relaxed and she started to get some feel of what I as asking. After a couple good directional changes, we stopped (learning that right away, good gal!) and then I thought about taking a step back. With the slightest of pressure from my right hand and my intent in my body and mind, that little mare took a really soft rock back and full 4 foot back as if she knew how to do that all along (well she does from the ground silly, says my positive voice)!
So that’s it for now – keep moving forward, keep thinking those thoughts that lead to movement forward and out of stagnation and inactivity. My little mare will help me with this. Can you tell the voice I’m hearing right now?