Voting with his Feet

Joshua does not have many means of objecting in his life and he used several of his best strategies last night at Riding for the Disabled. We have not been for months, with hospital and then Mum dying and then more latterly, Joshua has been unwell or too tired to go. So I hoped that after a lie in and a lazy day with Yorkshire Grandma, that he would be able to make it last night. It was the hottest day of the year here yesterday, touching 28 degrees, which is unheard of in these parts. So he was unimpressed changing into his jogging bottoms from his shorts in the first place. Then I came home from work and bustled him out of the door almost immediately.

He enjoyed the 20 minute drive there, with the windows down and loud music blasting out, so he was happy in the car. So he was unimpressed when we drew up at the stables, so he began to kick the car, reluctant to get out. So we sat waiting our turn, until his kicking became too vigorous.But he has become more impatient than he once was and the class before his was still riding, so he tried to kick me instead, then he went back to sit in the car. He was pretty hot and bothered.

When it came to his turn to mount his horse, he was again reluctant to get out of the car but was bundled onto the waiting horse. We explained that in the time since he had ridden last, he had become more likely to kick out and that he would not like standing still. As the riders began to move around the yard, every time Joshua passed the mounting block, he tried to stand up in his stirrups, he was clearly trying to get off. But on the rest of the ride, he was smiling and waving and looked as though he was having fun. Joshua sits really straight in horseback, much straighter than in a chair, so it is really good for his posture I am sure.

Riding has now finished for the summer and will re-start up again in September, so we need to decide whether or not to continue after so many years riding : he made it pretty clear last night that he did not want to ride, even though he seemed to enjoy it once he was on horseback. There is a waiting list of children who would perhaps get more out of their half hour of riding than Joshua seems to be doing, but it is the only extra curricular activity that he does outside of school and I feel as though it is good for him.

We have some thinking time, but he definitely voted with his feet last night.

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