This was a very last second idea. I wasn’t even sure if I needed to braid, but it was at my home barn and they held a lead line class for Wyatt too so it seemed like a good idea.
Wyatt woke up bright and early, threw some flip flops on and marched out of the house saying “We need to go load up!” Never mind he wasn’t wearing any pants. And it was 630 am with a 9 am start a half an hour away.
We got him settled down a little while I got myself around and went to get Gem to officially load up. Then we hit the road!
Having never been to a h/j show before, I had no clue what to expect. We got there ridiculously early, registered and then hung out for about an hour before I tacked Gem up. I wanted to have Wyatt experience a warm up and his class was #6 on the list.
By the time we made it to warm up, he was nearly jumping out of his skin with excitement. It took a bit to adjust my stirrups to his size (mental note, but kids stirrups) and then he clambered on and we went for a walk around the warm up. Thankfully it wasn’t busy or hectic and we had a nicely relaxed walk.
Wyatt kept asking to trot because all the big kids were trotting. I was tempted, but my main goal for him was to have fun and falling off in warm up would not have achieved that.
When his class was called he lit up. I led Gemmie in and we began our walk around the arena. I made a point to walk her past any jumps that looked particularly scary so she could see them before our classes. Not cheating. Being smart!
The judge had us walk one direction, change, walk the other. As we went past the jumps Wyatt kept asking when we would jump them. Ah kiddo, already braver than me!
The judge was really awesome, not that Wyatt registered any of it. They announced that it was too close to call and for us to take another lap around. After that we lined up and the judge came out to say hello to each rider and hand them a blue ribbon. Wyatt was oblivious to the fact that everyone got blue and threw his hand up yelling “I am the winner!”
He then attached the ribbon to his shirt and refused to take it off again. His smile was the biggest reward I’ll ever get and it made the whole day worthwhile.