Um ... what?!?!
No, I told him, Izzy was AWESOME.
Again, he shrugged his shoulders and said it was no big deal since that's what happens when a horse gets TRAINED.
Palm to face. How could he not see the miracle that was occurring right before him?
He was right, of course. This didn't happen in just one day. This is one year of work later. A whole, very long year later. It just feels like a sudden miracle.
I had some big AHA moments when I rode in the Christian Schacht clinic last week. That dude is a genius. In reality, it is Chemaine Hurtado, my regular trainer, who should get the credit. She's the one that's been slogging along with me this past year. Christian just helped me pull some things together at the right moment.
So what's going so great all of a sudden? Well, now that I know how much inside leg I need to use to get Izzy soft on the outside right rein, most of his shenanigans seem to have stopped. But again, even those have been disappearing slowly.
Since last fall, Izzy has tried to dissuade me from working by being a bit of a jerk for the first half of our rides. He went through several phases of refusal: balking, running sideways, kicking out at my leg, rearing, and flinging his head around wildly. Those things are now mostly gone.
I was able to canter all over my arena. We did squares, straight lines, 15-meter circles, and even some mini-lengthenings. As I was finishing up with the right lead, I looked at Izzy's ears in complete shock - they were floppy. This is the first time that he has cantered with floppy ears.
I feel as though we've summited a huge mountain and are now admiring the view from the top. It's a beautiful view from where I am standing, and I can't wait to get down to the other side!