I've been so excited this past month about Izzy and what we can do this summer. I mean, she was great at the shows we went to hang out at, and the jumper show where we did trot poles, I literally got her off the trailer, tacked up, and went in (to her first ever indoor arena) with no warmup, and she was great.
Then we have days like yesterday. There must have been something wrong, because both Izzy and the horse Cathy was riding were really uptight. Cathy's horse was looking for something to spook at. Izzy wasn't waiting. She had a massive bucking explosion on the lunge line. I was barely on before she had her first under saddle spook. I kept working on the things we've done before; if I lost her focus, I pushed her sideways or changed direction, or something(!).
And then... I didn't see at first that the neighbor girl was bringing her horse over to ride, but Izzy did. She freaked out, slammed on the brakes, bolted forward, etc. I kept spinning her around and smacking her to get her to go forward, but she tuned me out because she was more interested in something else.
Here is our biggest problem right now: I needed to just ride her through it. I needed to keep after her and left her know that while I acknowledged something unusual was going on, it was my job to worry about that and her job to do what I told her.
I didn't. I mean, I stayed on, but I'm not confident enough in my skills yet to really push her when she starts ignoring me because I'm not comfortable with her rearing... A part of me tells me it's normal and natural to not be comfortable with that. Rearing is a dangerous habit, and she has proved that she's willing to go there if she thinks she can get away with it. The other side of me argues that if I'm too chicken to confront her about this, then she has my number and I might as well sell her now because there's always going to be something interesting to look at.
I think that (as usual) the answer is in between the two. I'm just having trouble finding exactly where it is.
And there's another side to this; Izzy has been in from her beloved pasture for over a month now because of the weather. She has a 14'x14' shelter with a small run, but she really does much, much better mentally when she's out all day. I need the rain to go away so I can turn her out and get her brain back. I think that would help our other issues immensely.