My trainer doesn't know everything. This, of course, is no surprise to her. It came as somewhat of a revelation to me, however. I've become so insecure in my own horsekeeping skills, that somehow I managed to convince myself that those I rely on know it all, and that my own pool of knowledge was more akin to a quickly evaporating puddle.
In our lesson yesterday, Meg and I discussed Sammie's recent training. In mid-December, I handed the reins over to Meg for full training, launching Samba from 3 days training a week to 5. In some ways, it was like going from Kindergarten to 1st grade (or higher) for her. There was increased pressure, and Meg was pushing Sammie harder than she had ever been pushed before. It was a good opportunity for Meg to see what Sammie was capable of, and how she would react to being asked to do more. Last week, Meg discussed her training plan for Sammie with her trainer (who is also the barn owner...and did I mention, was the USDF Region 7 Grand Prix Champion for 2009 with her fabulous horse, Komo...I could go on and on about how great she is, but I digress) and made some changes to her plan. Kathy reminded Meg that draft breeds often mature mentally more slowly, and Meg used that information to adjust the pressure. We are on the same page about this...I am in no hurry for Sammie to make any great progress in a short time. Turning down the dial will be so much better for Sammie and I both. She will be happier in her work, and I won't feel like I'm "ruining" her since I am unable to ride her at Meg's level. Sammie and I are going to be able to progress at the same level, and I love this.
I always learn something new in my lessons with Meg. This time, I learned that the best trainers share one thing in common: the knowledge that they don't (and never will) know everything. Meg's (refreshing) lack of ego involvement in her work allows her to continually seek out answers and solutions that keep Sammie and I on the right path.
Meg inspires me in more ways than she knows. I am no longer going to be embarassed about what I don't know, and will join the ranks of those who unashamedly ask questions in the never-ending quest to form that perfect relationship with my equine partner.
From my blog: Green on Green