By Patty Wilber
Last weekend, the New Mexico Buckskin Horse Association and the New Mexico Appaloosa Horse Club sponsored the Fall Finale, which was the last official show of 2023 for both clubs. I was planning on one more show with the Paint Horse Club but my elk hunt (I finally drew!) conflicts!
The show was a little smaller than we had hoped but it was still big enough to make a teeny profit and it was a lot of fun!
All my students came away with prizes, and that was cool, but the thing that warmed my heart was the tremendous progress they have all made over the season!
Saturday was the ranch day. Colleen brought Luna and Heidi rode LT.
This was Colleen’s second show ever, and Luna’s second show ever, too. Luna was much quieter at the trailer than the first show and only tried to kick her companion (Gette) once. Luna warmed up well in the crowd in the arena, too, but when she had to perform alone in ranch riding, she claimed she could not possibly do that. Colleen had to give up on riding the pattern and demand that Luna just go where she was asked. This was not pretty, but Colleen got the job done, and Luna began to tow the line better. Colleen also had to contend with Luna panicking over a person on the catwalk, people gasp announcing and rattling trailers entering and leaving the show grounds.
Then I made her ride Luna over the scary trail course even though they were not entered in trail.
When we finally got to Ranch Rail, Luna was steering properly, and was so much steadier! In their first show they were dead last in Ranch Rail and in this show they were in the running for the top slots!
Heidi brought LT, who is the polar opposite of Lucy. LT almost always needs more warm up, no matter how much warm up she has had, because she does not tire easily and always has another gear in reserve.
When we first started working together, LT was not a good fit for Heidi. Now, Heidi is developing skills to be able to bring out the best in this super athletic but challenging mare. I am so proud of her progress, her grit, and the calm way she handles the dramafest that can be LT. At this show, her box drive box drive class showed how far she has come in holding, reading and driving cattle and she got LT to really stay with her.
Faith came Sunday for the classic horse show classes: halter, showmanship, English and western. Earlier in the season she was really worrying about learning patterns, mastering obstacles, and this, that, and the other thing. At this show, I thought her trail class especially exemplified how far she has come. She memorized the pattern in about two minutes with no concerns. Then when her horse was a little off for the side pass, she calmly fixed him up, completed the obstacle correctly, and moved on to the next element. She put together a really accurate and confident go. It was her best trail pattern ever (and the judges thought it was top notch too). It gave me goosebumps to see how poised she was, how she solved the little issues that pop up when doing this class, and well how she helped her horse!
I had the best time with these three and am thankful to be able to work with them!
Cancer journey update. I had my six month post surgery mammogram and ultrasound. I also needed my regular mammogram and I had tried to schedule them at the same time but had gotten stonewalled by the appointment makers even though I had orders for the follow up and a yearly mammogram.
As soon as I got in with the mammogram tech, she said, “Oh I see you are due for your yearly bilateral mammogram. We are going to do both sides.”
Hallelujah! That was easy!
Then the mammogram tech told me that if my mammogram results looked good, I could skip the ultrasound. That did not seem like a good idea to me, as we need to establish the baseline images after surgery, but I said I’d do whatever was best.
I went out to wait. The tech came out and was looking a little flushed. She told me I would need the ultrasound. That made me worry a little bit.
I got the ultrasound and that tech kept stopping in one area on the left side (cancer was the right side) and taking extra pictures….
After we were done she told me to hang on and the radiologist would come in and discuss my results. She did add that they did that so people would not worry.
It seemed to take a long time for the radiologist to come in! I was worrying!
The radiologist said I was all clear! I about burst into tears. However, due to the denseness of my tissue, I will need MRIs every six months. I think the surgeon had suggested something like that as well, but I will find out more next week. I was going to meet with my surgeon but she has to do surgery so I will meet with the PA on Monday.
In the mean time, this weekend I am at a super swanky wedding venue at the Blame Her Ranch in Ribera with my daughter and youngest grand daughter, Violet. Jim is home with Leilani and Amara. They will be here until Monday.