So last night I went to the barn with my roomie to ride our ponies and get down to some serious training before the big show next weekend. Possum warmed up really well ad we started jumping some small lines which was pretty good. Our outdoor arena is not exactly level. Possum does really well jumping the uphill side of the arena but not so hot on the downhill. Because he is downhill himself and heavy on the forehand I have to work twice as hard to not only fight him, but gravity as well. After a few reprimands abd halting in between lines he started to get the idea and sit back on his hocks and hold himself and not rush the lines. I was pretty happy about that. I was also working really hard on my own equitation which can be hard if you have a horse leaning on your hands and blowing through half halts. I did the best I could and really got a good core workout.
So onto the bad part. I was finishing up my jumping when one of the people in the arena decided to put the barrels so that they were standing straight instead of on their side. This is usually not an issue for us as we have jumped upright barrels hundreds of times. My first mistake was not examining the way they were set up. My second mistsake was not taking into account that we had just jumped quite a bit in some humid weather, and the third was my ability to focus and get us to a good spot. I jumped the first jump in the line and he was actually kinda slow on the landing. It was supposed to be a 5 stride line to the barrels and just before 5 I realized that I didn't have a spot and Possum realized it also. I put myself on autopilot (unconciously) and Possum went to duck out to the left since I was dumb and couldn't get us to a good spot. What neither he or I realized until the last minute was that the barrels were so close to another jump in another line that there was no way out to the left. It was one of those "O' Shit" moments. Since Possum was twisted to the left with no where to go he came straight up and over the barrels with his right hind coming right down on the barrel. The barel gave way and knocked over making it even harder for him to get his footing. His front feet landed and his torse was twisted and he couldn't get his hind leg free. By this time I was just trying to sit in the middle of his back and braced myself against his neck so as not to set him even more off balance. I almost came off myself. Just when I thought he was going down for good he got his leg free and cantered and then trotted away from the mess. It was at this time that I felt a noticeable limp and immediately hopped off and went to inspect. This whole thing happened in about 3 seconds but there was a lot of thought process. My first reaction was that he broke his leg. After walking him around for a few steps he was fine. I stopped him and inspected all of his legs. He had a minor cut on his right hind bwlow the hock and a little scrape above his coronary band. I felt terrible, I kept telling him sorry over and over. We walked out for a good 15 minutes at which time he was perfectly sound. I think he limped more after the jump because his leg stung than he was actually hurt. Thank God!! I treated the cuts and rubbed liniment on all of his legs and gave him handfulls of treats. I really felt like an ass. Because we were jumping an obstacle that is fairly solid I really needed to make sure that the jump had an out on both sides and that I was there to help my horse. I totally let him down and put him in a potentially dangerous situation. SO needless to say I'm not riding today and giving his cut a chance to crust over and treat it again if it needs it. I can't say enough on how I let Possum down and feel like such an idiot. He totally trusted me and I came up short, not cool.
Obviously there is a lot to learn from this and I'm just really glad that no one was hurt. I wish it would have been me that got cut up then him, I can handle my own injuries especially when I deserve them.
So tonight Nick and I are going out with a few other couples to dinner and bowling. It should be interesting since I basically only know Nick and one other person going. But I'm going to keep an open mind and try and have fun. Besides bowling is one of my games hehehe. Saturday I'll be back at the barn and hopefully ready to ride my Possum. I also found out that Nick is going to the show next Saturdayw hich is cool but perhaps a little boring and a very long day for him. But I'm glad that hes coming and wants to see me and support Possum and I. He's such a great guy I can't say enough good about him. Well I'm off to another school, talk later.