Monday, April 13, 2009

Jumping on Socks

Today was a pretty good lesson. I got to ride Socks, who was a very good boy for me. He's absolutely adorable, too.
I didn't know how well I was going to be able to jump today. I started to lose focus in my computer science class, which ends about an hour before I leave for the barn, because I started to hurt. It was just an immense, excruciating pain in my knees and hips and even my upper and lower back. I popped a painkiller before I left to go to the barn, and it kicked in just in time for the lesson. I feel like I'm going to pass out right now, but at least I'm not in too much pain. Right now, it's just a dull ache in both knees and my back, and a slightly sharper pain in my hips. I need to go back to the chiropractor, because I'm definitely going back to where I was.
Socks is such a good pony. He was very good in the stall when I was tacking up. He was also well-behaved while I fumbled around with his boots. I've never really learned to put boots on horses because none of the horses I've ever worked seriously have ever needed boots. I'm always scared that I've put them too tight. I've finally figured out the direction that they go, but Socks' back boots looked like the skid boots that go on a reining horse and they really threw me for a while. At least I can say I've learned how to put boots and a martingale on!
We worked on the flat for a while and had a good time with that. Socks was a little slow, but it was okay for the first crossrail that we popped over. It was so small, he actually stepped over it once. Later on, Teresa turned the crossrail into a larger vertical. I absolutely couldn't get Socks to speed up, so he approached the jump and I just barely got into two-point. I honestly didn't think he was going to take it and was cautious about getting into a full two-point, but Socks was very honest and took it like the gentleman he is. I got a little left behind, but I managed to avoid catching him in the mouth.
We did lots of jumps today. Socks was excellent. Once I got a crop, Socks moved out and cantered the jumps wonderfully. I jumped one-handed several times because my hip was hurting and I needed the crop to replace my leg. It was all good, even though it was a little harder on Socks because he sometimes wiggled up to the jumps and I needed the reins to direct him more toward the center. I'm very tempted to take a jump with no hands sometimes. On one of the school horses, I know I could do it. I don't think Stella's ready for me to throw the reins away on her just yet. She needs me to direct her every move over a fence or she'll freak out and think that I've forgotten about her. On the flat, we do the whole WTC without reins and she's great for me. She really only needs the reins for a bit of refinement and reassurance. Heh, I digress :)
There was one particularly amusing jump that we had where Socks popped right over and I fell forward a little bit. I caught myself with one hand on his neck during the landing, but there were a few strides between catching myself and regaining my composure. In those few strides, Socks did a flying lead change with no help from me and headed toward the next set of jumps with only an awkward leg aid to assist him. Did I mention that Socks is a great pony?
I even called him "sir," which was somewhat uncomfortable for me. It just slipped out. It has been slipping out lately. Mac was my sir, the Good Sir. After Mac died, I remember that Chester was the first male horse that I called a "sir." It made me feel terrible. I don't think Mac minds, or even can mind. If he were still alive, I think he would be glad that I've found someone else to be my passionate lover, that I'm finally comfortable handling and riding his little brother, and that I'm still riding. I think he would be glad that I can actually go to sleep and not have nightmares. I think he'd be very happy indeed.
In two months and seven days, it'll be two years since the day he fell. In three months and two days, it'll be two years since he died. It's been a long time without him...
Aw, I sound pathetic.

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