Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Camelot - Schooling Weekend Days 2 and 3

I woke up early and went to check Cupid.  We went for a little walk, then I put him in the round pen while I cleaned his stall and filled his hay and water.  Then I went for a run while he had his breakfast, and got a little lost on the trails! 

We saddled up a little before noon and warmed up in one of the jumping rings.  I was a little nervous because I wasn't sure how Cupid would act in a new place - which of course doesn't help him relax!  I was holding the reins tighter than usual and Cupid gently reminded me not to do that.  Sorry Cupid!  I was still quite nervous heading out to the cross country course, it definitely feels different when you don't have the arena walls around you!  I wasn't sure if I was ready to do any jumps so at first we just watched.  Then I saw a little log.  In fact it was so little Cupid could step over it.  So I had him walk over it.  Then we walked back the other way.  So far so good.  I was still scared, but asked him to trot and he calmly hopped over it. 
Our first cross country jump!  
After a few times over the tiny log we moved on.  We went on to jump up a bank, and over our first ditch!  Cupid was a star.  He took everything in stride, wasn't concerned about the new obstacles and didn't try to run off with me.  I was so proud of him!  I wish I could say I was as confident as he was, but I was still pretty scared.  I'm surprised Cupid didn't react to my tenseness but he was such a good boy and took care of me.  Once again I was reminded how lucky I am to have him! 
We jumped up this bank
Our tiny ditch
I was hoping I would be more comfortable on day three, then was dismayed to find myself still tense.  I told my trainer that perhaps I would just turn Cupid into a Western trail horse.  He would be pretty good at it!  But I was feeling pretty down on myself, and like I let Cupid and my trainer down.  So my wonderful trainer took me on a nice easy trail ride and we talked about my fears.  He reassured me that my feelings weren't uncommon, I shouldn't expect to feel the same as I did when I was young.  I was reminded that riding is supposed to be fun and I don't need to put so much pressure on myself.  By the end of the ride I felt a lot better, like a weight had been lifted.  So Cupid and I cantered around the field, then went back out to the cross country course and hopped over a few logs!  I'm glad we ended on a good note.

The third afternoon Cupid was happy to doze in his stall with his head resting on the door.  We loaded up mid afternoon for the long drive back.  Cupid seemed happy to be back home, and walked straight to the pasture gate.  Probably to brag to his buddies about his adventures!

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