Now I'm preparing for surgery in late January that's going to have me laid up enough I can't ride for two months at least. Two months...in Feb and March when I should be preparing for show season which was the whole point of moving to the expensive barn with an indoor arena. I kind of want to cry everytime I think about it. I know doing it is the right thing to do but I wish we could have done it in November when we first figured out what was going on. Especially because it feels like something really clicked with Tax in the last week. Wow...enough, bitching already, huh?
On a happier note let me explain about Tax. I had take a week off mid-December when my cramps had me doing not a lot but writhing in pain. Coming back he hadn't been turned out much because the rain turned all of the outdoor arenas into big mudpits. Our first ride didn't go well. He bucked and I flopped around and got two huges bruises on my stomach from my saddle horn. Really ugly and of course all in front of the new girl at the barn who rides so well. Bleh. I got smart the next day and lunged the heck out of him. I even used side reins which I typically don't like doing. Whatever, maybe I should lunge him in side reins more. By the time I got a nice slowish rythmic canter from him from the ground he was pretty tuckered out. I hopped on to ride and I swear it was a different horse. He was so light in my hands it was amazing. He moved off my leg like...well, not like a 6 yo green ex-racehorse. I could feel him stepping through with his hind. Another small change I made was carrying a dressage whip. I never even really used it but it changed his whole frame. I could feel how lifted his ribs and back were. I decided it was a good time to try some leg yeilds at the trot. We've been working on some lateral work at a walk.
I got him trotting evenly down the center of the arena. Toward the end I shifted my weight slightly to slightly drop my weight to my right seat bone. I pushed my left leg against him just behind the girth and held him steady with the reins: outide holding and inside softly massaging. He in return bent all wonky and broke to the walk. I tapped him on the left with the whip lightly behing my leg and clucked. He picked back up the trot and I felt him thinking about what I was asking. I straighten for a minute then asked again. He tossed his head once against the reins, figured out I wanted them there and then trotted a decent yeild. Yay!
We've been working on it a couple of times a night since. God, it feels good. Maybe someday he'll be a decent riding horse if we can just get the canter under control. I do have more hope than I used to though.