After Rocky and I finished his evening workout of walking with purpose, over poles and on gradual hills, we relaxed in the arena with only a few lights on. I had fought off a migraine in the afternoon through resting in a cool, dark room, and I wanted to read quietly before bed without triggering the headache. But I’m leaving town soon for Pagosa Springs and I also wanted horse time.
I sat on an upright barrel with my book and a beverage and obliged Rocky’s requests for rubs and scratches. Eventually he cocked a hoof and slept, barely a full horse length away. He was totally at ease, lips dangling, hip shot, breathing deep and rhythmic.
I read on, also deepening my breath and loosening tension.
A timeless time later, he roused, walked off a few paces, and pooped. He looked at me for a moment, then walked across the arena to pee. He stayed there and looked a question at me. I gathered book and lime soda and slipped my feet back into my sandals while he waited at the gate.
I let him out and strolled to his pen to open the gate. He stayed connected to me with chi and moseyed a little bit. I waited, and trusted, and soon he came back and went into his yard for the night.
He is almost ready for riding again, after chiropractic and acupuncture and this twice-daily workout program. His hives have cleared up and this time I didnt forget any doses of antihistamine, so I think it should stay clear now.
But even if he couldn’t be ridden again, experiences like these make me so proud of him, and so grateful for the relationship we have developed. He teaches me what I can expect and achieve with River, as she becomes my other equine partner.
“Expect a lot, accept a little, and reward often.” – Pat Parelli