It’s one of those mornings where I woke up pretty tipped-up. You know what I’m talking about if you’ve had a day where your spouse avoids you, the horses run to the other end of the corral when you approach, and your dogs lay in their beds and stay very, very quiet. I’m one of those people that attempts to stay pretty even tempered. I try to avoid allowing myself to rise with the highs and fall with the lows. I fail miserably, and often, but, nevertheless, that’s my goal. I’ve found over the years that it’s just easier for me to try to maintain the facade so I and the folks around me don’t have to deal with the goofball on a high or the man in the dumpster on a low.
The facade works pretty well with most people. It doesn’t work well at all with most horses. The horses I’ve spent time around have a keen ability to know exactly what’s going on inside me. Sometimes they alert me to things going on inside that even I had failed to recognize. I’m not educated in psychology but, after spending a good bit of time helping people with their horses and seeing the horses improve as the people improved, I know that there is a real connection between the inside of a human and the behavior of the horse.
We have the opportunity to work with a therapeutic riding program horses, instructors, and volunteers. One of the big issues in a program like that is that the horses take on so much of what clients bring both physically and emotionally. The horses get burnt out. Not from the physical exertion of walking or trotting around an arena but, from the things that are going on inside the clients. The horses are healers. They are willingly taking the “stuff” from inside a client into themselves and find a way to deal with it. Some are better than others at dealing. We try to find ways to help those horses having trouble find an outlet for letting go of the “stuff”.
If we allow ourselves to heighten our awareness of our horses’ reaction to us, we have a better chance of recognizing who we are at that moment. If we recognize who we are, we have the opportunity to make changes for the better. Our horse is the most honest reflection of who we really are. The good new for people like me is that I don’t have to remain who I am today. I can work on me until my horse says, I respect what you’ve become. Let’s go for a ride!!