There Can Be No Looking Back.

A delta. This is the place where the river flattens out and moves on to become the ocean. There can be no looking  back. It will never be a river again. There are sometimes moments in the journey with a horse that are like that. There is a change and there can be no looking back.  Here is a photo that is a bookmark on one side of that moment of change. It was taken by Susan J. Stickle , the official photographer for the Adequan Global Dressage Festival.  It is of Biasini and me executing  the pirouette in the Prix St. George dressage test. Take a look.LWilloughby.PersonalWebLicense.17GD93333SusanJStickle.com.-(ZF-10499-12132-2-002)

At first glance it  might look alright. Or if you are not familiar with dressage you might think it is ok.  As pirouettes go it is technically fine. Biasini is sitting well behind and his front  legs are coming up nicely, it all looks fine. But……look at my arms! I usually ride with my arms out in front of me. My elbows are not usually almost behind my body and I have a firm hold on the reins. What’s wrong with that you ask?  Well let me tell you.

I remember that ride very well. Biasini has one fault in the show ring . On some days he decides  he knows the test and he can do it  all on his  own.   He gets tough and he becomes a bully. I sometimes call him Mr. Bully Biasini. On this particular day he was Major General Bully Biasini. It was a very tough ride from beginning to end. It is very discouraging to have those rides. So much work and so many hours of  training and when you get in the ring you are just struggling to keep going through the  test instead of being able to show what we are capable of.

The next day I went in the ring again and I knew we had a judge who does not give away marks for just showing  up. But this time I had  prepared differently.  Before getting ready I sat in the barn and visualized a beautiful ride. Biasini was up and light  and responsive to may aids and we floated through the test. I decided to ride that imagined ride for real. The warm up went well and although it may not have been quite as blissful as the visualized ride it was very good.

We went into the ring and together we performed a lovely test. We got a good score and very positive comments from the judge. We won the class.

Since that time I have never allowed myself or Biasini to go back to the Bully mode. He does have moments of trying to take over but I quickly just give and lighten up and he responds. If the horse pulls and the rider pulls back the horse will always pull harder and win. If on the other hand you give to the  horse and say “carry yourself” then he will stop pulling and be light in the hand.  I may not  have it perfectly yet but it is a long way from where we were. So the photo of the Major General Bully Biasini is my response to this week’s photo challenge. The word is deltaIf my journey with Biasini is like a river then we have crossed the delta and now we are out on the ocean.  An ocean full of opportunities.

To see some of the other responses click here.  https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/delta/

To read my original post about the show that the photo was taken at click here:

https://horseaddict.net/2017/03/15/trial-tribulation-and-triumph-tale-of-a-dressage-show/

 

 

31 Comments Add yours

  1. (HorseLover4Ever) Elizabeth says:

    Thank you for sharing this with us, and congrats on your win!!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Somnath says:

    Nice depiction!!

    Like

  3. As someone who knows nothing of this sport, when I looked at the photo I had no idea that your arms were in the wrong spot, what I thought was that you look very tense. So, it was interesting to read that the ride did not go well. I think visualization can be applied to so many different things.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      I was not frightened that Biasini would misbehave but I knew he was in his ” I’m taking over cause I know the test best” mode. So I needed to be intensely focused! And yes in that sort of “fight” there is too much tension. You have a good eye to have spotted that!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. That’s the same visualization that is important before any athletic event. I used it when I swam all the time! Again, you guys look great!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      You are right visualization is very important. Thanks for your very kind comment

      Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. Have a good weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. dray0308 says:

        Welcome!!🤓

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Wow, very true Anne. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. mirandavoice says:

    I have shared the link of this post in my Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/MyOfficialDiary/

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you for sharing your delta moment. Although I know nothing of horses, I think the message is one that can take you nicely through life. I wish some of our leaders will have a chance to read your post and take heed..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you. I’m glad you got something out of the post despite not being a horse person. And as for our leaders…..I’m Canadian and I’m pretty happy with the Canadian Prime Minister. But there are a couple of other leaders that have me alternating between anger and worry on a daily basis. Maybe it goes back to that saying of ” power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. Thank you for your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. There’s such a strong message for life in this post. 🙂 Lovely to read, you do describe everything so well! xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for your positive comment. It seems that there is something in the letting go that has relevance to other parts of life and not just riding a horse.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think it does to a lot of parts of life. It’s just not always so easy to do. 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 2 people

  9. sandyjwhite says:

    As I read this, I thought how the importance of ‘giving’ applies to people, also.
    While we like to control and manage others, we must give them their head if
    they are to grow and realize their full potential. And like with horses, much
    easier said than done.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      These are very wise words. You are right. And yes with adults, children and horses it is easier said than done. Thank you for this insightful comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. sandyjwhite says:

        You are welcome. Your posts often get my wheels turning…which is good!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. anne leueen says:

        Thanks! That’s great to hear and I feel the same about many of your posts!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Judy says:

    I love your take on delta! It applies beautifully to so many other situations. I wish I’d learned about give with my horse; we both would have been much happier.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      It is an easy concept but the execution is very difficult. When you feel like you must get them back to you it is hard to do the opposite of your natural inclination and “give” . Thanks for you comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Awesome…. you make it look so easy but we know so well from the look of concentration that it ain’t, lol. Congratulations.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you for that very good observation!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You make it look easy but the intensity of your focus speaks clearly of concentration.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. I love your posts so much! I truly feel in the moment and in the middle of it as you describe it. Beautiful picture!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. anne leueen says:

      Thank you I’m so glad that something of what it is to ride dressage is getting across. I appreciate your comment.

      Liked by 1 person

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