I have CFS - chronic Fatigue syndrome. I don't talk about it much - I have dealt with it for 30 years now, and it is a bit like having a wart on your back, most people never see it and there just isn't much to talk about.
I keep the exhaustion shoved down in a box most of the time and as long as I respect my personal limitations, I do fine. I often compare it to being like a dog chained to a tree in the front yard. Dogs like that RARELY hit the end of the chain. They will rush up and stop Just Short. I do that. I know where the end of the chain is, and I really do avoid back flipping myself by doing something stupid. Well, most of the time.
I am not sure if it has been the heat, or some outside obligations that had me worried (we did a wedding carriage drive in Lake Hughes, and I spent a couple weeks worrying about the drive in with the BAT - aka the big ass trailer that we haul the horse and carriage in). Stress is the enemy - anything that lowers my immune system will activate the CFS. And it got out of the box in the past 2 weeks.
And while I have cut back and cancelled some lessons and done a lot less, I have Not been able to really fully recover. So, I am tettering on the edge, trying to keep up with most of what I have to do, meanwhile feeling achey and brain damaged and darned it all, my back hurts like Hell. With all this going on, Corey has gotten stuck on the back burner.
I have managed to ride him while teaching a few lessons and we had a GREAT session where we were able to canter full laps around the ring, in Both directions. I was really thrilled with his first right lead canter. He has been super in everything I have asked.
Then we did the wedding last Saturday. The haul in went well, the carriage drive was good except for the appearance of Cattle right next to the road we had to drive along. My carriage horse is bullet proof in town. He has braved Fire trucks, motorcycles, hot rods, trains, and even a bike tire blowing out right behind him (we all thought it was a Gun Shot). But he does Not Like Cows. Period. So, when he saw them, he tried to jump sideways. I had to send him forward with the whip and we Galloped for a few strides until we were past the attack Cattle! Then he settled down and all went well - but it was a fairly spectacular entrance for the bride and her father!
That didn't faze him in the least. But for whatever reason, he did NOT want to lunge to the right. I probably should have just taken him back into the round pen, but I had the training horse turned out in there. So, I just kept pushing. It is the first time Corey has truely FOUGHT me. I don't know what was so wrong, but he really didn't want to go right. I could turn him to the left and he was perfect - so I know it was not the harness.
Afterwards, I didn't even make him get hosed off - we just had some carrots and quiet grazing time. I figured a little sweat would not kill him and I wanted to reward the fact that he gave in and did what I had told him to do.
I ALMOST took Corey to the movie shoot, because I thought they were just going to shoot stills, and he could have just been a companion for the model horse. LUCKILY I opted to take an experienced horse, because it turned out I had to ride off camera through some deep brush to guide the rider as he trotted in the desert!
Wrong. I just Died after that weekend. I slumped along, trying to do what needed to be done. And sort of doing it. But I would get to the end of the day, and I had not worked Corey. I didn't feel up to trying to ride him and teach at the same time, and so many lessons, I was running late anyway, so I just taught from my chair.
To add to my week from Aug 4 - 10, I had to drop entries off at the fair on two different days, and I had to haul a horse to the San Fernando Valley, and also meet with my dad and pick up a desk that he needed to clear out of storage. It is a GREAT roll top desk and we Love it, but it was just more time and physical effort.
Yesterday, at least I got some rest in the morning- I was judging the 4H photography entries. So that is sitting still in air conditioning. Then I got home and taught 4 lessons. and I rode 2 horses, but neither one was Corey.
So, here I am, It is 4 pm on Sunday, and I am trying to find the strength and energy to go ride him. My back hurts and yet, I have to get him going again. So, it will probably Just be lunging IN the Round Pen to confirm that he WILL go to the right. It won't be much, but it will get us back on track.
I have been accepted to ride with Charles deKunfy next weekend. I am making arrangements to bring Corey along. I won't ride him in the clinic, but I can hopefully school him in a new arena and give him the experience of hauling new places and staying over night. Because he will have to do that in October.
But this also means that I HAVE to focus on my dressage horse Louie - so that he can perform well at the clinic. Sometimes I just have too many Irons in the fire.
I am trying to support my immune system, get chiropractic care, take my supplements and do everything for my SELF that I would for one of my horses! But it is never easy. But hopefully I will have some wonderful reports next week! And I am Sure riding with CdK will be exciting and Corey will probably be a star just hanging out with the big warmbloods!