The PPE is scheduled for Friday. Hopefully it goes better than the last one. I’m not sure I have the money in my budget for a third PPE. Who knew it would be so expensive to not buy a horse?
All your positive thoughts are much needed and appreciated!
As it grows nearer I find myself growing a bit nervous. Not about E. I’m super excited about him. He is a pretty great match for my current needs and skill set. It’s just…well… I’ve had Gem for nearly 8 years now and that’s a pretty long time to get to know her. I’ve ridden her for thousands of miles and spent hundreds of hours on her back.
I know that mare inside and out. I can tell you just how fast we are going by the feeling of my posting. I know each hoof fall and how it should feel. I know how much she eats and drinks. I know when she will be hot and grumpy versus frisky and ready to go. I know her breathing.
For her part Gem knows the rules of being here. She knows what is expected of her in every situation. When to stand still and when to move. She knows to slow down around Wyatt. She can read my own moods and actions. There are so many little things that she does that I take for granted but in actuality rook years of effort to get to such as trailering well and settling in after traveling like a pro.
Getting a new horse, any horse, will be starting all over with that. It’s going to take a long time to learn everything all over again. To build that level of knowledge. One thing endurance is great at is getting you to know your horse and maybe I will dabble in some 25s just for that fact. There is very little guessing when they aren’t quite right. I could tell when every hoof was hitting normally in all circumstances. When tripping meant too long of a hind toe. When being sluggish was due to attitude or health.
I’m nervous about entering into the unknown. About questioning everything because I don’t know what his normal is. I’m excited to start learning everything about him, whether that is E or another horse, and building this relationship again but I’m also nervous. I tend to always think I’m braking my horse. its an annoying internal dialogue that goes along the lines of “Gem stumbled a bit…is she off…is she lame and I don’t know it…I’m asking too much..she can’t possibly work this hard…there she did it again…I’m hurting her…etc….”
The 100 miler killed most of that off with her. After we completed that I figured that she could handle most of anything else I was asking of her, well physically at least. Knowing myself though, this inner dialogue will return with new horse until I figure out what exactly the normal is and what all the horse can do.
It’s hard to step out of the bubble I’ve created over the last 8 years. Sure Gem is hard and tricky and sometimes a pain in the butt, but I know what I’m getting with her. I know her reactions. I know what will spook her and how she will react. Learning a new horse, especially one the polar opposite of what I’m used to, is going to be a huge learning curve.
Not only am I going to have to learn his way of going and his body, but while doing so I’m going to have to learn to let go of the things I learned with Gem. Not all of them because so many lessons she taught me made me a better rider, but it also taught me to be distrustful and defensive. This particular horse doesn’t need that. Trainer tells me I have to give permission for Gem to do what I ask however at least 50% of the time she doesn’t do it so it is hard to let go. The new guy in town should, if his history and my test ride pan out to be good predictors, do the thing by his very nature. Punishing him for doing what I ask will not be a good thing and I’ll need to trust him as we grow together.
Partnerships take time to create. I know that. It took 3 years with Gem for her to open up to me.
I’m nervous. And excited. And ready for the future.