Who needs enemies, right? Hillary, I know you’re reading this and I’d just like to take this moment to publicly chastise you for not taking any pics/video of my ride this weekend! After all those jumps (three!!!) that I didn’t set up but like, I RAISED THEM FOR YOU TWICE!!! My god.
Now that that’s out of the way. My perfect little cinnamon sugar pony. I cantered her. Which, right now (and all last year) was just super anxiety inducing and I made all kinds of excuses to avoid it.
Enter Hillary. That witch. She came over to jump around on Donny and basically told me that I was riding Phoebe and I was cantering and to just shut up about it. So I tacked up, wrapped my security blanket around myself, I mean put on my xc vest and got on. With Hillary’s voice drowning out the voice in my head I had some of the better trot I’ve gotten yet, and of course. The canter. And perfect pony was pretty perfect for where we are right now.
I’ve kind of been letting myself be much more a passenger and allowing Phoebe to stay a little sucked back and behind the leg. This has made it hard for me to stay with the motion, and I then feel less secure in the saddle, which naturally increases my anxiety. Which first off, letting her go around in this sluggy and hoppy trot is just bad training, and second, when I had her moving out at a more forward pace I felt a hell of a lot more secure and confident.
Currently Phoebes will trot around for a bit then just offer the canter randomly and instead of tensing up and asking her to stay at the trot (my soon to be old go-to) Hil reminded me of something our trainer used to say. Take any calm upwards transition as a gift and then ride them as if you asked for it on purpose.
So right now I need to just keep doing the thing. Keep riding and be more insistent about Phoebe actually moving forward, wear my security blanket/xc vest for confidence, and accept the canter as a gift when Phoebe offers it.
Also get Hillary to come out and hold my hand/yell at me to just quit overthinking everything and go for it. Eventers are supposed to be the brave ones after all.