Friday, April 6, 2012

Voice Inside My Head

After some pretty serious searching and re-evaluating of priorities on my part, I think I have finally found the right bridle for Cuna. 
You can call him "Mr. Edgewood"
It's refined enough to suit his face, but classy enough to indulge my taste. I'm oiling and scrubbing like a mad thing to get it to an appropriate level of dark and conditioned, but I like it so far. Rest assured, fellow tack snobs: I have also put keepers on that full cheek. This was just the 'trying things on' cellphone shoot. 
Best view ever
After getting things adjusted, we went out and trotted up a hill. Cuna isn't super fit yet, but he has that thoroughbred heart and lungs, and we chugged right up the hill. We even saw a SUPER SCARY hiker with his dog, and Cuna did nothing more than give them a hairy eyeball. 
So freaking cute
Old man resting this morning. He was chipper enough after a couple of peppermints. I took him out to the arena and saw jumps set up. 
Like this
I decided I couldn't make the poor guy do hill work two days in a row and I've done enough flatwork lately to choke a very large quadruped. I trotted around the arena a few times, deciding whether or not to jump. It went kind of like this:

Scary voice: "No one is here to tell you what to do. You're going to screw up and get hurt. Besides, there are only so many jumps in a horse. Don't waste Cuna's jumps doing something stupid."

Happy voice: "You like bounces. It looks kind of fun."

Scary voice: "There are so many poles. You will freak out and loose your marbles and mess him up. Besides, that second crossrail is probably almost 2' in the middle. Cuna isn't warmed up enough. You don't even own him yet and you're going to hurt him."

Happy voice: "Cuna can jump bounces with one leg tied behind his back. At this point in his career, it is practically impossible for you to screw him up." 

I tried to tune out both voices and trotted a pole on the ground a couple of times. 

Scary voice: "He hesitated and sucked behind your leg. You can't trust him. He's going to spook and something and dump you on your head."

Happy voice: "Well, next time keep your leg on."

I tried to drown out both voices, and took a tight trotting turn to the bounce. We puked over the first jump, landed way too close to it, and Cuna made a long, low jump over the second. I awkwardly bounced on his back and slipped the reins. He gave a mighty head fling and a little buck to put me in my place. 

Ok, more impulsion, try again. We definitely can't quit after a bad run through. The distance still didn't work. Hm. Canter in this time. We made a tight turn, then bounced right through with me staying off Cuna's back and out of his face. 

Happy voice: "I knew you could do it. That was pretty fun." 

The level of drama I can produce over two tiny jumps is ridiculous. It's a good thing Cuna completely ignores my crazy and just does his job. What a guy. 


  1. SchoolMASTER!!! Gotta love a horse like Cuna. He is a gem.

    Good for you going over the jumps. Sounds as if you are slowly conquering that negative voice.

  2. Your bridle... In the first picture, is it adjusted like you have it now? Because if so, you may want to lower the noseband a hole or two - technically, the noseband and the cheekbone should be one or two fingers apart so it doesn't rub. :)

  3. Awww! I love Cuna just from reading about him.

    I have the same issue staring at jumps... "He's going to get in deep." "Well keep him forward enough so that he doesn't get in deep. And don't look at the jump. And grab mane." "Uh uh. No. He's going to get in deep and I really just shouldn't jump him anymore because I'm messing him up." "Jump the jump already. Don't look at it. He'll jump anything and he could jump his way out of a ditch, you just have to stay with him." Until I finally just jump the thing. In the video I have of the jump I fell off after you can hear me pep talking myself on the approach "Yeah, we got this. We can jump this. It's just a vertical." ... and then afterward you hear "Oof... Crap."

  4. I never heard your "inner voice" before, its interesting. I hope this doesnt offend you, but it sort of explains all the anxiety you have been feeling in the past, and I just never knew why. You worry too much, my tack whoring friend :P I'm glad Cuna is basically a boss.

  5. My idiot voice that wants to warn me of the dangers of jumping can drive me crazy on a bad day.
    One thing I have noticed is that it tends to shut up once I start actually working or jumping, and start thinking about fixing whatever mistakes I am making.

  6. I see the fact that you can identify the difference between the "scary" and "happy" voices and rationalize your fears as a huge step. Cuna looks adorable in his bridle. Such a sophisticated gentleman.. :)

  7. Aww sorry but I had to totally laugh over your dialog. Not mocking your fear, just love the way you write. :D I'm glad you did it. We all know you can!!


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