Today Dawn had to cope with a number of new things during our ride. A trainer was doing a lesson with a walk/trot student on a pony on the lunge line, using a lunge whip to keep the pony moving. Dawn was paying a lot of attention to the lunge whip - she's pretty nervous about them due to some really bad prior "training". It was a good chance for her to observe and see that lunge whips don't have to be frightening.
Then it started sleeting - we're supposed to get a good amount of snow tonight. The sleet was very loud on the roof of the indoor, but after a few minutes of nervousness, Dawn settled well to work. Then, as we were going along the long side of the arena next to the viewing room - which is set fairly high up behind glass - several kids came running up the stairs into the viewing room and suddenly popped into view just as we were going by. Dawn shied hard away from them but I stayed with her just fine. We went back to stand near the viewing room and observe - the kids waved to her from inside - she bravely stuck her nose way up and touched the glass - and a while later they came out and into the doorway to the arena to say hi to her and pet her - they were sorry to have spooked her and said how beautiful she is. It was a very good session - we got some good work done and she got the opportunity to watch and see some things she was worried about. I was very proud of her. She started today on her Ultimate Finish - just a small amount which she ate with relish - and I'll be adding more over the next several days. This should help her weight - I observed her in turnout today while I was parking the trailer, and although she was eating at a round bale with one of the alpha mares for a while, the rest of the time she was having to move from bale to bale - she's using a lot of calories just moving around.
This morning I moved my trailer over to the new barn, before the rain and snow came in. It felt very odd this afternoon to not stop by the old barn to take care of the boys - for those of you who have kids who have moved away from home, or who have gone to college, it's the same feeling - like the nest is empty and the birds are flown. But they're likely not gone for good - in fact I now have another stall at the new barn, in the same small barn area where Dawn is, starting April 5 - this means Drifter and Pie both have a place to come back to. This takes a lot of worries away - now I just need to wait to hear from Heather about how they're doing and when I should start going up there to take lessons with them.
March is a time of hope and expectation . . .