I had two very good lessons (all the media is from one of them) and then I had a very rough lesson. Logically, I know Stinker is a very tough ride. I have watched trainer get on him and have similar issues (she is much better at correcting them more quickly, but the problems don't magically disappear). Emotionally the lesson left me feeling totally incompetent.
After the fact I realized it was essentially all a physical issue on my part, which didn't really help with my emotional butt kicking. His back used to curve to the right, so his hips were always trailing to the right. My tendency is to collapse my right side and I really sink my right seat bone into him. Which was magnified when I was trying to correct the haunches. Now that he is straight, I can't break myself of the habit.
Sometimes I do better than others, but when I sit too much at work (especially when I am doing technical things that require full focus) I start sitting heavier on the right seat bone and it spirals from there. Poor Stinker was suffering from me telling him to move his hind to the right while shoving it to the left with my seat bone. He did not appreciate my mixed signals and got quite frazzled (I don't blame him because I get quite frazzled when I get opposite instructions).
I got a lot of inverting and flailing as my poor horse tried to tell me he wasn't capable of doing what I was asking. If I get my butt out of his back and give him room to work he is totally capable. But he is not the time to ignore one signal in favor of another one, he tries to do any and all plus some extras most of the time.
After much struggle we finally got some semi ok work and let him end. After we talked a bit I suggested that the next time trainer gets on him, since she is crooked in the opposite direction going to the right is much easier for her.
On Tuesday I schooled at home and really focused on getting my right hip lifted and coming forward and the work felt really really good. Hopefully I am able to recreate that feeling this weekend and find out if it looks as good as it felt.