I just filled out an entry form to compete in agility with Seelie in May, the first of two trials I intend to enter that month. We actually tried once before, earlier this year… but I got lost on the way to the competition and we never made it. (I now have a Garmin.)
I have mixed feelings about this. I know it’s for fun, but when I get into that environment I get competitive and I want to do well. I end up putting too much pressure on myself. This particular class we’re entering requires us to make up our own course from the obstacles set out in the ring; we’re doing this one because Seelie’s not ready for the regular classes which include the weave poles. Odds are we can avoid doing them. For any readers who aren’t familiar with agility, here’s what weaving looks like.
These mixed feelings are also linked to my former competition partner, Kestry. Kes was a Belgian Sheepdog, although he didn’t look like one, being a fawn color with black points instead of all black.
Kes was what some people would call my ‘heart dog.’ I had a special connection with him. We competed in obedience and agility; his agility career was cut short because he physically couldn’t handle the triple jumps in higher levels of competition, not at the heights he was required to do based on his size.
I tried competing with Phoenix, but he didn’t like it and my heart wasn’t in it. I want to compete with Seelie; he’s got so much ability. Gryph too, although we’re not as close to ready.
It’s still difficult to do the paperwork; it brings me back to Kes, and a different time in my life. I know we’ll have fun. I also know it will be an emotional day for me, as we’ll be going to a place where Kes and I competed a lot, so the memories will be crowding in. I lost Kestry before I adopted Seelie, and every so often I accidentally call Seelie by Kestry’s name; in some ways they have similar personalities.
We need to get through this first one; I think it will be easier for me to just see Seelie on the course after that.