It's no great secret that our life is always a roller coaster adventure. No matter how well planned I think the day/week is, something always happens that changes the orderly chaos I thought I had contained. This past week was a prime example.
Madison was scheduled to show at her first dressage show in Billings, Montana. Although her horse has been battling some lameness issues, we had her coffin joint injected in both front feet and she seemed to be back to her normal, free-flowing, fluid gaits. On Wednesday, she had another lesson with Karla to tune her up before we hit the road for the show. Ka Ching was a royal pain the butt! She was angry, defiant and unwilling to work.
As Madison moved to transition her from a trot to a canter, Ka Ching began to throw her head and then put her nose on the ground and bucked and bucked. Madison fought a good fight trying to stay on, but in the end, she belly-flopped....and hard. Then ka Ching stepped on her left shin as Madison laid on the ground trying to catch her breath. I dealt with Madison and karla dealt with Ka Ching. After an exhaustive lunging session, Ka Ching seemed a little more willing to please and Madison regained her position on top of the beast and rode on.
On Thursday, as I packed the horse trailer and gathered the remaining interstate health certificate the horse needed, Madison tried to give Ka Ching a light work out here at home. This is where my kid broke down in tears and realized this weekends show was in jeopardy. Ka Ching refused, REFUSED to move forward. She wouldn't walk or trot down the center line of the arena. WOULD. NOT. DO. IT!
I called Karla and we decided it was best to not spend $500 in gas money to haul the horse to the show since she seems to have some yet, undiagnosed lameness issue that is causing her to be this defiant. We ate the show fees and decided to drive out and watch our friends and trainers show. On Thursday I called the host hotel for the dressage show, The Dude Rancher Lodge in Billings and the receptionist sounded very pleasant, but also very distracted. I told her I had a better price on Priceline and she happily matched that price.
Fast forward two hours......I decided to check on the miserable weather (snow) forecast for Billings and was shocked to the point of insane laughter to see that the hotel I had just booked, had just had a wanted felon shot and killed there in a massive gun fight with police. When I booked the room, the receptionist was distracted since the police were conducting their investigation and the crime scene was being cleaned of bio hazards. Yippeeee! It was at this point that I realized all the signs were pointing towards telling me not to travel to Billings.
In fact, the weather was so bad for Karla and her crew that either Friday or Saturday they awoke to 6 inches of snow. This added to the chaos of trying to keep show horses clean and warm. I'm glad Madison and I stayed home, but my kid is beside herself with sadness and anxiety about not having a functioning horse for this show season. I hate to see her so sad and feeling as though her dreams are slipping away. I hate to see her crying and worrying. I hate to see her moping around.
The hunt is now on for a new dressage horse. I suppose if she has the talent and drive to reach for the stars, Marc and I will do what we can to help her get there. For anyone who doesn't think dressage is a sport, think again. Both horse and rider have to be in great condition, mentally and physically and be totally tuned into each other. Now Madison is ready to go and show and her partner is struggling. Ka Ching will be heading to a specialist in Anoka, Minnesota and we are hoping that we get some answers to her lameness and refusals.
And as usual, our carefully scheduled chaos goes on in disorderly disarray.