It's been about a month since the vet told me Eddie could be ridden -- at the walk only, and for a few minutes at a time. I'd been gazing longingly at that strong back since I'd been allowed to hand walk him and wondering if and when I'd be permitted up there. I have to admit, I intended to blog about the experience when it happened but, as most writers know, when emotion hits you it's a little hard to share the experience in any reasonably coherent manner right off the bat.
My husband went to the barn with me, camera in hand. The barn owner, my friend Stacey, was in attendance as well. I'm pretty certain both of them were a little worried about how Eddie might react when I swung a leg over his back. After all, the last time I rode him was October 2010. Even the vet warned me not to get bucked off.
Reins in hand, I stepped into the stirrup from the mounting block, settled into the saddle and … Eddie moved forward as if the confinement of the last nine months had never happened, as if he'd had his usual work-out yesterday, as if he expected me there on his back. He went to work, striding forward solid and strong.
We made it three quarters of the way around the arena before I started to cry.
Even my husband forgot to take pictures.
Next week we may be permitted to trot. I'm fairly certain I won't be crying, but I sure as heck will be grinning.
Here's a picture from a year ago
"I am strong when I am on your shoulders. You raise me up to more than I can be."
--Brendan Graham, Rolf Lovland