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July 15, 2018: The Importance of Team Work

The dispatches that are the hardest to write are the ones in which I have something important to say. I then want to get it right, and of course include all the supporting details.

Another wonderful day – full of amazing revelations. I finally got what I have wanted for so long, horsey friends to ride and interact with. I have waited for this for so long – I am afraid that I will put both feet and my hands in my mouth and send Judy and Sarah running back across the river to Lazy Mountain. I really am afraid that my willful and opinionate personality will be my downfall.

Judy and Isme

So yeah, I am going into the competitive pleasure division of the CTR. And so is Sarah, and so is Judy. There is still the likelihood that Sarah will ride Spiffy. If she does not, she will ride Hrimmi.

This morning we three plus Pete worked on ground training – in the yard, on the road, and in the arena. I have never before worked with any individuals who were so on the same page as I am philosophically when it comes to horse training. Both Sarah and Judy are considerate and kind and take the horses’ best interest to heart.

My first revelation was brought to my attention by Sarah. She wanted to do some work with Hrimmi, lunging and trotting out – and said that perhaps the Playground wasn’t the right place because this is where we do agility to which I added “also Intrizen training.” She was so right. Hrimmi didn’t take to being lunged in the Playground – now I have lunged her dozens of times, but not in that space. Lunging IS a form of compliance. We finally decided that trotting her out for the judges and going in a circle would work better.

My second revelation came as Judy, Sarah, and I were out for a ride. In the past, when riding, I have always been focused on what Raudi is doing or supposed to be doing. Today, I let that go and just had a good time riding. The more relaxed and the happier I was, the happier Raudi became. And amazingly, upon our return, her heart rate was lower than it had ever been.

My third revelation was that what has occurred is really something special. I am now no longer working alone, but rather one of a team. And in being one of a team, I no longer have a competitive mind set. I’m riding to have fun. And I’m riding to support my team-mates.

It was really gratifying today, to give Judy an assist with Isme, her mule, and see how both responded. I chunked things down in working with Judy on saddling issues and in working in the agility course. And it all went so well – I had my mentors, Robyn Hood, Susan Harris, and Steiner, to thank.

It could have been different. I might still be out riding alone, badgering Raudi to go faster, in hopes of our doing well in the Open. But this was not to be. What is to be is far better. Of this I am now sure.

Next: 197. 7/16/18: From Nothing to Something

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