This is embarrassing. I mean really embarrassing. A grown woman is acting like a bratty two year old and her favorite word is “No!”  I can’t believe she’s talking to an instructor like that! She isn’t even doing anything difficult. Just some walk/trot work, mostly on a 20 meter circle. And the horse is gorgeous! A big, floaty trot when he’s truly engaged. <sigh> Most of us would kill to ride the dressage schoolmaster. She’s a good rider and can definitely handle it. What’s her problem?

Um, that bratty two year old? Uh, that’s me.
I know…I know… (hands patting the air)
Embarrassing, huh? A grown woman… (shaking my head)

My inner child was triggered by several things. I think…

  1. During warm up Thunder’s nose started to run. Green mucus, yuck! His owner took him to an isolated stall and placed a call to the vet. No fever though.
  2. This is my first lesson ever with my instructor’s replacement. Performance anxiety?
  3. A horse replacement scramble ensued and because the dressage schoolmaster had just been used… In the meantime, this is what I overheard: the rider complaining that he just wasn’t rounding. Not rounding = giraffe head. When his feet were done the other day an abscess was discovered. Amazing, that he never seemed to be in any pain. By the way, how was he? Bucking? (huh? bucking? gulp)
  4. Circles. Lots of circles. Nothing winds me up faster then circles. How can something so easy be so difficult?!

The lesson went something like this…

Pick up a trot on a 20 meter circle at A. Okay
Get your heels down. Sorry, bad habit. OK, down on the up…
Push him forward! More? No!
What?! He’s not even moving!
Not moving?! You’re crazy! Compared to Thunder…MOVING!
Don’t pull back on the reins. Aaarrrrgh!
Just in front of the vertical, on it, just in front…
He’s falling in on that circle push him off that inside leg. Tapping
Push him out with your whole leg. Pushing
Use your knee and thigh not just your lower leg. Thud
Don’t lose the outside rein connection and give with the inside rein. Aaarrrrgh!
Uh-oh, giraffe head. I don’t like this…I’m feeling really nervous.
Why? You’re doing fine. Pay no attention to his head and push him forward.
Oh my God! Butterflies. I’m actually starting to shake…
No! I’m not comfortable.
When was the last time you videoed yourself riding? Shrug
You’re a good rider and you can handle this. Uh, I can’t today.

Hmm, like I said, embarrassing. Get a grip on yourself woman! You’ve ridden this horse before. This lesson wasn’t any different from the others. Gee! Could someone please send the real Dressage Rider back?

I miss her.