Finally, I did it. I tacked up Berry, and I just got on and rode.
I put on my stickiest breeches, pulled out the dressage saddle and tacked up. As I lunged Berry again, it came to me that there really wasn’t a way to make her easy. I’ve had her a long time, dealt with all her green horse-isms, and knew her well. For her to be slow and lazy, she needed to be in regular work. The only way to put her in regular work was to ride her.
I was just going to have to deal with the spunky and move through it. There was no point in working on halts with a fresh horse, because she’d want to move. I was just going to have to move with her.
Basically – I was going to have to ride, and not be a passenger.
Once I realized that, suddenly it just seemed like no big deal anymore. Of course I was going to have to actively ride. Duh. That’s the point!
I got on her, and she did the same old trick of moving off as I got on. But it actually didn’t bother me at all this time.
I didn’t try to work on making sure she would halt like last time, I just started moving right away. She’d already warmed up on the lunge, I just put her right into a trot and started working.
And it was exactly like old rides. We got to work, jumping right into exercises we did before. We worked on circles, lengthening, shortening. She fell easily into frame. She listened to all my aids. And without even having to practice, her breaks were working. She listened to half halts, she halted completely, and then trotted off when I asked.
It was SO EASY. I felt secure in my seat. It felt like I hadn’t missed a day of riding. I’m sure my form would have said otherwise, but since I couldn’t see myself, I’m going to pretend I was perfect.
We had a great ride. She felt good, and it was just fun. The next day I was sore. There’s no better feeling than being riding sore again.
I was way too worked up over making this a big deal. But now the big deal part is over, so I can just get on and RIDE. I don’t even know how to express how happy I am. Now I need to start planning ALL the riding adventures!