I guess was always just a matter of time but the fact of the matter is that the rest of my life and how I feel about it is encroaching on my riding and I’m going to shit. It started at Pukete show really. I had a miss and collected a rail in the amateur class and then had a stop at the combination following it and never really got going again. I’m getting so nervous I’m locking up, and just taking everything so seriously. But then when I’m miserable at work and at home and exhausted getting everything done, it’s getting harder to leave it all at the ring gate. The kicker is I’m riding Malinki fine because I know she will take rails so there is no pressure. Connie on the other hand matters to me. So I’m trying too hard and I have just lost my good quality canter where all my distances show up like neon arrows.
The next day at Pukete she cruised around the 1.15m in the video I put up in the last post. And I thought I had it back again but I was wrong really. The next weekend was Waikato Showjumping and I’m not getting to these shows until after 9pm after a full day of work and then still have to settle the horses for the night and then start at 6am the next day if I am in the first class and I think exhaustion is playing a big part in my problems. It’s easy as a rider to think only of horse and not take care of yourself but the rider is an important part of the combination and needs to be treated like an athlete as well.
Anyway at Waikato I had the Amateur first up and I was clear up until the 8th fence. The distance was a bit long, but she didn’t come with me and chipped in and we had a stop at the second element. Came round again and rode well and finished well. No rails just that silly stop which was my fault. The further around I got clear the more and more tense and frozen and wooden I got trying not to make a mistake so of course I made a mistake. I have lost the fluid feeling of my good rounds where everything happens almost in slow motion and I feel confident and in control.
I late entered the 1.20m class and as I was cantering into the first fences I was telling myself to move, to do something, to do anything, but I sat there like a giant lump of useless. So naturally I had the rail at one and a stop to the combination and I was so wild with myself I actually you know rode. And it was like a switch had flicked, Connie got confident because she knew I was there with her and I was committed and she just jumped so amazing.
In hindsight I should have down graded to the 1.15m championship class but Im so sick of being stuck at around that height so I stayed in the 1.25m championship. I was better in this round and made it all the way to the second combination before I had trouble. It didn’t feel amazing but it was ok and I was getting it done. Somehow I had gotten it into my head that it was four strides down to the second combination but it wasn’t so I ended up miles off the first fence of the double and had a stop. I came round again got a bad distance for a stop at the second element so I popped back over number 1 and retired because I was just getting nowhere. Poor Connie burdened with a headcase like me.
It’s so frustrating because I know it’s all my fault and I’m not sure how to fix this.
I’m struggling at work and I miss my home and don’t feel at home up here and my relationship seems to be slowly but surely circling the drain so I think I’m getting to shows and putting heaps of pressure on myself to do well to justify anything really, to have some good, and in doing so I’m ruining it.
The same weekend Malinki stepped up to the 1.10m and had two rails but is still just stepping over them because she really is ridiculously huge (17.2hh ish) and had a lazy rail in the 1m. The thing with Malinki is I don’t know if she will ever be that clean. Sometimes she tries her guts out to get over the fence clean and other times she will just bludge it. And she taps her way around the jumps. She is better if I hold her up at the base of the fence but still doesn’t try much. She was upgraded to the 1.15m championship and she actually jumped round ok. 3 rails but sometimes she got in the air nicely. Check out the video and tell me what you think. She probably isn’t really much of a showjumper but she is just such a cruisey girl to have around and would be the sort of horse you can jump big on and make mistakes and it wont phase her like it upsets Connie who tries so hard to be clean. I wonder if Malinki will start to get cleaner as she gets stronger because she has improved a lot, but as you will see on the video she still is very crooked.
And as for what comes next, I’m not really sure. I need to make some changes definitely in life because this is misery, I’m broke, stressed, homesick and utterly miserable. When I’m riding is my respite. Had a fabulous ride yesterday into the bush with Malinki, flushed some wild peacock and rode up to bush line and enjoyed the views. I cantered Connie around bareback until my thighs cried and I worked the little horse I’m riding for my cousin and she has made huge improvements in a really short time.