...to everyone, for your kind words, thoughts and prayers for my Grandma.
Things were very bad late last week, but in the last 2 days she has made improvements! I saw her this afternoon and she looked great-not back to her normal, healthy self but I think she's on her way. I hope. She's still having seizures but no headaches and they're shorter and less frequent. She's so damn resilient. She had her sense of humor back, and I just got off the phone with her...she called me to ask if dogs can get hemorrhoids:)
Anyway, thank you again, everyone. Your kind comments and emails helped so much. I wrote the last post in a strange place and I'm feeling much more hopeful today, having seen her. It was the right thing to do. Kyle came with me and he was great with her, too.
On the Miles front, he managed to get himself a couple sores on his back-either bug bites or he rolled and cut himself on a rock?? It's possibly a bite from LaShore but I really doubt that. Nothing serious, and really quite superficial (also they're not saddle sores; I wish I was riding enough to consider that!), but I gave him the weekend off so they can heal and hopefully I'll be back in the saddle on Tuesday.
Our last ride on Wednesday was quite nice. We worked hard on transitions, and I replaced the hackamore we've been using with his bit. There was still some teeth grinding and neck twisting, more towards the end of our ride for some reason. Still, it was less than before, and I rewarded him with either a long rein or a walk when his mouth was quiet and he was moving straight and forward. He's a smart boy so I'm hopeful we will figure out the reason for this behavior together. It may very well be anxiety or boredom. I also may have to experiment with other bits. Right now he's in an oval mouth loose ring 5". He's got such a small mouth though, I want to try a 4 3/4" size next; maybe something like this. I'm very intrigued with the Waterford Bit-does anyone have any experience with this? I'm also curious about Myler bits, though the price is a huge turnoff.
It's also more than likely he just needs more mileage with a bit regardless of what it is (although single joint, fat snaffles are definitely out. He's much happier with a mullen or double jointed bit that is slightly thinner). I'm trying to be super conscience about keeping my hands still and in the "work zone" above his withers, and maintaining bend in my arms while moving with his motion, hence the transition work. We acheived some fairly happy, uphill trot-walk transitions by the end of our ride.
Looking forward, and totally unrelated, we're having a professional photographer come out to the barn in September, and I'm so excited! I hope she can capture Miles' spirit and goofiness on camera. I've never, ever had professional pictures taken of anything (well, OK, my wedding), so this will be fun!
I hope you all are enjoying your horses wherever you are. I was overcome with a feeling of gratitude and peace while grooming my boy this afternoon, and I hope the same for every horseman and woman out there. We are so, so lucky;)