… was all I could say after my lesson with Charm last Saturday. She was… not herself. We played for a while before I rode and she seemed really eager and almost playful. It started with the barrels. I asked her to do a figure 8 around them at the trot and then I asked her to jump one every now and then. Well she thought that was great and just started to jump every one she came across. I thought, “Nice! I have a playful horse today!” Then we moved to the round pen outside. I sensed that she was a little hyper alert so I had to keep her focus on me. I asked her to do some circles and change of direction online. She was doing great.. I moved it up to the canter and as she came through and did a flying change she started to buck all the way around the round pen. In all the years of owning her I have never seen her buck like that. At the most, maybe 2 times in a row.. but not completely around. I stopped her in mid buck and she just looked at me. That is where my eyes got really big and I was thinking.. “Just what do we have here today?” I took her halter and lead off and we did some liberty. She was in tune with me and I decided to let her eat some grass as we moseyed back to the arena. I started my lesson with Shirl and I wanted to focus on lateral work (since we have been playing with that lately). Well to put it bluntly.. Charm was just a pill. She was awful. She resisted, she overreacted, she kept trying to rear, it was horrible. I was being gentile and slow with her and she just was not having it. I could tell she would get really LB dominant and defiant and then quickly go completely RB introverted. Her eyes would totally glaze over and she would just go into herself. It was hard to keep up with her sudden mood swings. I am use to having a predictable and reliable horse. I had to address the horse that showed up that day! I felt bad that first lesson since October had to be like this. I was hoping to make some progress and it seemed that we took 100 steps backward. But, in reality, I am glad that on a day like this, I had Shirley there to help direct me and keep me confident (the rearing FREAKS the heck out of me). We did get some cool stuff going.. just not what I was planning to work on that day. Near the end of the lesson, Shirley hopped on Charm to see if it was me that was causing her to behave in such a weird way. Charm didn’t change for Shirley.. So I am not sure what caused her to act in such a strange way. Shirley mentioned that several of the mares are coming into heat right now and that Charm also might be. It is very possible and I hope that is where the moodiness is coming from. Charm does act extra crabby when she is in heat… after all of that.. I think for sure my next horse should be a gelding.