The last time that I rode my horse, I was hung-over.
"Hung-over the saddle" that is and specifically the pommel. I think that I might actually be hitting the stage where I no longer fit in the saddle. I am about 31 weeks pregnant, for those who may be wondering what on Earth I am talking about.
I rode Harley on the last day of Spring Break, April 5th. It was an absolutely gorgeous day and he was blissfully free of coughs. I rode him for a short time after our (less than stellar) long-lining session and he wanted very badly to canter. The canter was wonderful, but I chose to stand in my stirrups. It just didn't feel right to sit anymore. I could barely stand high enough to keep all of myself out of the saddle and off the pommel. With dressage length stirrups, this was a challenge. We returned to posting trot, as Harley offered a lovely stretch and I found that I was having the same trouble in trot. Sure, I could raise my stirrups a few holes, but raising your center of balance is contrary to a balanced position and security in the saddle. Obviously, giving up either of those things in not an option, especially when Harley is carrying two of us!
I think my saddle days are over until after our baby's birthday. Tomorrow, it will have been two weeks since I rode my horse and I already miss it. I know that this is for a very good reason, but it still makes me sad to think of not riding him for months. I am also not sure when I will be able to ride him after the baby is born. I really, really, really hope that I do not have to have a c-section. Thankfully, so far there is no reason to suggest that I will. I need my core muscles in one piece to ride my horse and I cannot imagine not riding for the entire summer. Now that notion really makes me sad.
I have still been visiting Harley and working him from the ground. We have had some really nice lungeing sessions. He has been feeling good and so eager to work that his transitions have been spot on from just my voice. He has also been stretching his topline and touching his nose to the ground as he trots around me. He looks so beautiful that it just makes me want to ride him more!
I am really glad that I took the time to teach my horse and myself groundwork exercises long before I ever knew that there would be a time that I couldn't ride my horse. However, this doesn't change the fact that I long for that swinging motion in the saddle. Nothing else quite compares.