Two rides this week...Monday was progressing on the foundation...seat, hands, shoulders. If you look at the dirt, that's where you're heading. Sometimes it feels like that game we played as kids - chewing gum, patting yourself on the head with one hand,and rubbing circles on your stomach with the other...but more and more things feel like they're falling into place and becoming more automatic or natural. Oh, yeah, and tucking my butt under....that one I'm definitely going to have to work on. Had a quick poke around in the pasture at the far end of the arena...he turned into a badass coming inside (did that the first time too) and it made me laugh to roll my eyes at him and ask him to smarten up.
Today was a huge, huge milestone. Using the whole arena now...was it last week that I was clinging to the barn end like a life preserver? Tonight we worked on counter-flexing, and I could FEEL what it meant to open up my hip and give him a door to go through. Oops, shoulders in the right place. Lift that ribcage. Look where you're going...more things to juggle, but in a GOOD way - feeling how each piece comes together and the very first notes of harmony.
And tonight, the lope. It was anything but pretty - I felt like a rubber ball in the saddle - he felt like a dolphin coming up underneath me. Huge, powerful shoulders...unlike anything I've ever ridden. He wants to rush in, and hustle on - those are things to fix way down the road. Beautiful rhythm to his stride, and came right back to me when I asked him to stop. No stupidity afterward...got two beautiful solid stops and backs in the rest of our ride. We all sat and talked afterward, and he stood peacefully and quietly the whole time.
I;m seeing and feeling a connection that we didn't have before...there's a different level of friendship and trust there. Beautiful.