Here’s what I’m talking about!

As I watched my little girl Yasmin approach the gallops on her first pony club cross country training session on Thursday, again I heard myself say, ‘No, there’s no way Yasmin can do this! She couldn’t want to do this! Could she?’ But again, she amazed me.
I had no idea what ‘The Gallops’ were, but everybody was getting really excited as the kids, ten years old and under cantered over towards the end of the field.
 And there it was! The Gallops was for all intents and purposes, a race course, on sand thankfully, but  the kids go in two at a time and race each other around! They can go as fast as their horse can run!
I heard myself say ‘Holy Mother Mary, Jesus and Joseph.’
‘Mam, Can I have my whip?’ she asked me. ‘What? I don’t think you need your whip Yasmin, don’t go too fast…. and off she went.
Yasmin couldn’t wait to ride ponies. She pestered me from the time she could talk at age three. I agreed to let her have a lesson when she was five, against Anto’s wishes.
Yasmin had a huge difficulty with balance and muscle control because of her Dyspraxia. She had already had many falls before she was was five and broke arms, legs, elbows and wrists. She had plenty of falls on her head and many nasty cuts that I found myself becoming her constant nurse if I wasn’t dashing off to Temple street with her!
I was worried sick about her wanting to follow her big sister Sarah’s footsteps in horse riding.
 Yasmin had many falls on her pony lessons but thankfully had no injuries and her OT reassured me and said that riding lessons were really good for muscle building and strength.
 My heart would race and my nerves were gone but she would get back up on the pony and keep going. And that’s the way it’s been for the last five and a half years. Yasmin also has a comprehension difficulty, that means that she doesn’t understand long sentences, so it’s harder for her to listen and learn. It took her a long time to get to jumping 60 inch course. She has to concentrate hard to get her strides right, coming to a jump, position herself properly and jump when the time is right. She’s still trying to master her strides and she’s got a young pony so he can be a bit misbehaving, but she adores him!
Yasmin came back from her first run on the gallops with a big smile on her face, ‘Mam, I really need my whip this time!’
 She gave Eclipse a clip on the bum and off he galloped. He galloped fast around the course gathering speed. To be honest, I’m an awful coward, I was hiding behind the gathered parents, peeping through my hands. I prayed Yasmin wouldn’t fall off. Her position was really good. She was doing it!
‘That was really fun Mammy!’

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