I know I promised a blog about the Mitochondrial Disease Symposium I went to last weekend, but it always takes me a few days to process it all. So, before I write about that, I thought I would share with you some of the highlights of Clara's horse show last weekend. Oh what fun!
I know I have said it a hundred times before, but it takes my breath away to see Clara on a horse. She sits up so straight and tall, which has been wonderful for building her once-very-weak trunk muscles, and it has been a wonderful chance to see her put her, um.....leadership abilities (a.k.a. Napoleon syndrome, bossiness, etc.) to productive use. :-) While I know little-to-nothing about horses, she has always seemed very natural on a horse, and for her, the bigger the better! The kid has no fear! Also, I have found it very exciting that there is a sport Clara can participate in where it doesn't matter if her legs are a little 'crooked'. I certainly don't think that sports are all there is to life, but you always want to know there are options available for your kids if they want them. And while we cannot afford for Clara to 'show horses' in a traditional way, therapy has given her a great opportunity to ride and she is growing so much stronger and improving her balance doing something she LOVES!
The therapeutic ranch where she rides, Reins of Life, has an annual horse show. I wish we could have been there for the whole thing, but Day 1 was when I was in Chicago. They gave the therapy kids an opportunity to ride at the beginning of Day 2...Father's Day. We definitely went and enjoyed our time there, but I didn't think Jeff wanted to spend his entire day there.
Here are some pictures I took from the day. I didn't really get any great ones of her on the horse, Hollywood, because it had monsooned he night before, and while the therapy kids were riding in the inside arena, the guys who take care of the property were outside trying to get the very wet arenas ready for all of the other events.
Of course she wanted to wear her pink cowgirl boots she got for her birthday! For some reason, every time I am about to take her picture with them on, she tips her foot up. I guess this is what cowgirls do in her mind. :-) I also don't have the heart to tell her that she rides English and not Western. At least she's having fun, right?
If you have pink cowgirl boots, you should also have a pink bandana, right?
Alyssa got her all set with her number. Megan was excitedly by her side all day.
They all have so much fun at these events!
I know this is too close-up and a little blurry, but I loved it! you can see her little snaggle-toothed mouth and the pin her therapist in Georgia, Ms. Peggy, gave her at her first show. Very special. :-)
Waiting with Ms. Beth for her turn. Those little bowed legs definitely work for her in riding pants. :-)
Riding tall! She definitely puts on her 'riding face'. She doesn't respond at all when we wave at her. :-) Hollywood looked especially lovely, as well.
That's her at the end. The judge is talking to her and giving her a trophy.
Clara got a First Place trophy! She was one of three who tied for first place. I think that is so cute. :-)
This cracked me up. She put this hat on and then said, "There. That's better." Was the helmet cramping her style?
Happy Father's Day!
You know we had to take our traditional 'sleeping' picture!
It took her a while to put that trophy down. It is now proudly displayed in her room with her ribbons from Butterfly Dreams, her original pink camouflage helmet, her big butterfly Ms. Laura made for her, and the picture Ms. Peggy so beautifully framed for her before we moved. She is building up quite a collection....a very special collection.