Lance and I were moseying along in our new normal when he somehow sustained another suspensory injury, but Bentley came along just in time to keep me in the saddle and reignite a flicker of hope for more. By the time that little flame was thoroughly doused, Lance was able to be walked again and so we've pottered along. Lance is now back up to what we were able to do before the suspensory injury, and we have our first horse-camping trip of the year under our girth (pictures here).
Meanwhile, Lance has become a CHUNK! I marvel, because at the beginning of last year he was wasting away and I was doing everything I could reverse the weight loss. He shed out beautifully this year, too, after nearly going bald last spring. Between the minimal work and the maximum poundage his endurance is low, but his breathing has stabilized even though we've eliminated the antihistamines and even lowered the prednisolone dose just slightly (he still gets spirulena and flaxseed meal). Our challenges to better fitness are time and place. The sand arena has dried out to the combination of hard and shifty that I don't trust, and our ride-out-from-home range is getting ever more restricted with continued development. I've been putting Lance's Renegade boots on so we can use the gravel roads more, and am contemplating front shoes. I was looking forward to hauling to the beach and elsewhere with my best riding buddy, but she broke her ankle so is out of commission for at least another month. :-(
But wait; what's behind Door #2? Door #2??? I didn't even know there was a Door #2 until a month ago, when someone seeking a dressage instructor was referred to me by another professional. After her first lesson, the owner of the barn where student #1 sometimes boards also expressed interest in dressage lessons, and turned into student #2. Then student #2 referred student #3 to me, a 13-year-old who boards at her barn and really wants to learn dressage. Student #3 came out for her first lesson on Sunday – and Lance became a schoolmaster! I'm still trying to process this surprising turn of events even while feeling thankful and affirmed. Life is a wild ride!