Satisfaction from time spent with them comes in many forms, and sometimes I just need to be reminded of that.
Then there's the warm snuffles of a happy horse who pain is finally being managed. Seeing the sparkle come back into a worried eyeball, or watching a personality come alive where anxiety used to rule..
Wednesday all three horses gave me something to feel good about.
Before I left to go see Pia, I had an early lesson on Prair where it felt like everything just fell into place.
We hacked on a loose rein to warm up and she was right there for me. We cantered and I felt like there was zero chance of her moving anywhere I didn't want her to be. I stood up, she moved out, I sat back she sat down and collected... it was all just so easy.
S set a gazillion jumps so we could work bending lines, short approaches, long approaches and even the dreaded coup. Prair ate everything up, landing softly, staying straight, getting changes and looking for the next fence. Everything went so well the fences just kept going up and up and up and Prair just said yes mam (after knocking a few rails) and stayed solid and steady.
A couple jumps got up to 3'3"/3'6" ish and it was remarkable to feel like it was the same ride as 2'/2'6". It was a perfectly warm, sunny, enjoyable ride and a perfect way to start the day.
Those are the rides you live for.
Then I got to see P1. Seeing the Red Mare in such a relaxed state was almost as rewarding as the stellar lesson on Prair. To know how anxious she has been, and how much we've struggled to get her to just be - it was awesome to see her plump and content and playing with her herd mates. Maybe it was the heat and her own exhaustion, but she was sweet and soft and looked like a happy horse. Have to love that.
Even Gus got in on the satisfaction action - in spite of being on the disabled list. Gussie's demeanor is brightening back up and he's mugging for treats again and acting like his old self. That comes along with a big sigh of relief after a few days of watching him mope around with an increased limp.
We're pretty sure he just blew an adhesion (it appears that his annular ligament is fully adhered the top layer of the superficial..) so he's on stall rest and hand walks for a bit while we try to manage the inflammation and minimize motion in the joint.
I've always said that if you can't find some enjoyment in being a horsey nurse as opposed to a rider - this probably isn't the hobby for you. But this week I was grateful to all of the creatures for each reminding me why I do this - in their own way.
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