A breach in my defences

It was a tricky end to the week and subsequent weekend. As I have briefly mentioned before I have a 2yr old son. The part I’ve failed to mention so far, he is a spirited, fearless, independent, free range, wild child. Often compared to Mowgli, he is the off spring of two stubborn, determined, single minded, career obsessed people, so you can probably say we only have ourselves to blame. Described by his nursery as the most fearless child they have ever met, I’m not really sure what he will grow up to be, but going by what I deal with on a daily basis, I am sure it will be something fairly spectacular. (As I am attempting to write this, he is spinning me round on the office chair)

Stunt toddler and co conspirator at the top of the stairs with a bike

Poor Angus was not very well last week. I dropped him off at nursery on Monday morning with a bit of a cough and a snotty nose and hoped for the best. I had just about got back to the yard when my phone started to ring and I knew what was coming. Eventually I did answer, to be told he needed collecting after spewing, getting a 48 hour eviction notice slapped on his back on the way out.

The following few days were spent on the sofa. I find it really difficult to sit still. I can’t even stand still to brush my teeth in a morning as I feel I’m wasting time, so it’s usually something done simultaneously with loading the washing machine, packing Angus’s school bag or trying to shout at him to hurry up and get his shoes on so we can leave. Day one was spent watching ‘Danny the champion of the world’ seven times in a row. Day two, he was feeling a little better and so I built the brio railway at least 46 times. Angus will only sign off on the construction if I have used every single piece and thanks to Christmas, his collection is extensive. No sooner has my masterpiece been approved, it is then dismantled…………. I did manage to escape the house for a few hours to do the yard and ride Dominica. The weather has been incredibly wet, but with our first lesson looming I’ve been keeping her ticking along with adventurous hacks and trips in the trailer, as schooling in the field is currently impossible.

With good taste like his mum, Angus is team Devoucoux all the way

As day two of snotty toddler imprisonment ended, I went to bed with a feeling of impending doom. Sure enough a few hours later, I woke up with incredible stomach cramps and spent the rest of the night hugging the toilet and trying not to faint from the pain. Whilst it wasn’t a pleasant experience for myself, it did make me realise that Angus had actually trooped on amazingly considering he had gone through the same a couple of days earlier. Being born in Yorkshire, he is ‘well hard’

The following day, as I have no help on the yard, I soldiered on to get the horses done, only vomming in the wheel barrow once and returned home to take over child care as my husband started work. For those of you who have children will know, looking after a sick toddler is all consuming for parents. Looking after a now fully recovered bright eyed and bushy tailed toddler, when you feel like death, is torture. At one point in the day, when I was feeling particularly dreadful lying on the bathroom floor, Angus appeared in the door way clutching six bourbon biscuits, with the equivalent in his mouth. I realised in this moment of weakness, that my defences for concealing chocolate from my toddler had been breached. That whilst I was incapacitated, he had scaled the kitchen units and discovered the medicinal stash of sweet treats on the top of the upper wall units…….I did tell you he was like Mowgli. This was a rock bottom moment not only of my week, but of 2019 so far. I now need to buy a safe to keep my chocolate secure.

Despite the fact he is already wearing age 5 clothes, Angus appears to have ambitions of becoming a racing jockey

On Saturday I was feeling stronger and as it was the weekend, I seized my opportunity to cash in on daddy day care whilst the six nations was on and take Dominica for a drive in the trailer and another adventure hack. Having been perfect to load up to this point, this was to be the first day she questioned my authority, with a nano second pause and a backward ear twitch before continuing in. I was so glad it happened on a day when I had time to deal with it. So often with young horses when you’re pressed for time, which as a juggling parent I constantly am, they pick the worst moments to question us. probably because our body language is different I’m sure, but that’s life and the reality is that when we’re rushing, we try to take short cuts and inevitably it bites us in the butt.

Luckily today was a day I was fairly time rich. I dealt with the situation, by unloading and loading her a few more times at home, with no more hesitations, driving to our destination and unloading and reloading before going for our hack. With young horses, it’s so important to nip even the whisper of a bad behaviour in the bud. I had a very similar experience of leaving the yard whilst riding her, after a couple of weeks of work. That was a day I was under time pressure, with two other horses to ride and Angus to collect from nursery at 12, I had to scrap my plans for her session that day and just spent half an hour walking in and out of the yard and getting off and on. Since that she has never once looked back, so I hope the loading will be the same.

Saturday’s sunny hack

After a fairly busy week for Dominica work, education and experience wise and a draining week all round for me. We all had Sunday off, for her to digest the information learned and for me to catch up on all the things I had neglected during the week. I look forward to a new week and for preparing for our first lesson together on Thursday. As with all other equestrians, I’m keeping an eye on the EI situation and in contact with my vets about the best thing to do to keep safe.

There is still another week to go on the Silvermoor ambassador poll, so please if you can spare a second, follow this link and give me a vote; https://poll.app.do/silvermoor-ambassador-s-2019/je-rResC   Its really quick and easy and would make such a huge difference to me.

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Aimee x


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