I am wavering between confidence - I am an adult! I have been handling horses for many many years now! - and nervousness - I've never shown 100% on my own before - about Sunday. It's too late to rope in a barn kid. The boyfriend has expressed his lack of interest in ever being at the barn. It's just going to be me and the pony, with possibly a friendly neighbor's helping hand if he flat out refuses to self-load.
I just got a shot in the arm when I checked the Beland Stables website to find my times - Training 1 at 2:12 p.m. and Training 2 at 3:32 p.m. Wow! Maybe some kind of karmic repayment for being the first person to go all day in my ring at Groton House?
This is much, much better. It means I can leave at a semi-reasonable time in the morning and still have plenty of time to groom and tack up at the show itself, without feeling rushed. I figure I'll plan on getting there about noon to allow the butterflies to settle, to really lay everything out and get it done slowly and methodically instead of rushing.
We had a good prep lesson on Tuesday night, as Tris gave me another reason to love him when he didn't bat an eye at the neighbor's fireworks party. We ran Training 1 and T. liked it, giving me a few good pointers (if I think I'm over-correcting for the bulge of his left shoulder down the center line, then I'm right on) and pronouncing it overall a fair representation of where we were. Which is really what I'm aiming for. I figure there's not a huge need to ramp up a training schedule for a straight dressage show. I, like many people, shed months of work when I go into the ring, and cramming the last few days won't change that.
I do have a goal for Sunday, beyond not screwing up, and that is to be braver/more forthright about my warmup. To date, I've gotten nervous about really putting my leg on in the warmup ring, and allowed his nervous flailing to substitute for forward, which then (predictably) fizzles out when we get into the ring. I'd like to bring more of our actual training level into the ring. We'll see!