Friday, July 24, 2015


What makes you worthy of respect in this world?
Respect can mean something different to everyone.
Maybe you deserve respect because you work hard.
You love a lot.
You give more.
But what if you are demanding respect...
Can you really dictate who must give you respect, because you are worthy of it?
By your own tone and recognition?
To me that is the complete opposite of what respect is.
Respect is earned.
It is given to you freely by others; not taken from them.

The same is true with our horses.
You cannot force a horse to respect you with a stick.
You can't demand his attention, his love, his dependance.

The same is true in our hearts.
You cannot force someone to see you the way you see yourself.
You can't demand people to stop their own thoughts, and only hear your own.

Creating a respectful attitude is hard work.
Being open minded, loving, observant and level headed takes a lot of mindfulness.
A lot of try.

I have fought a lot in my life to try and win respect from those I have always looked up to.
Coaches, bosses, people who I thought worthy of my respect.
Those who I worked hard for, bled for, cried with, cleaned up messes for....
And at the end of so many of those stories, I have found one big hole in my heart.
And it dawned on me, in the dust of all of this silly competitiveness that has been thrust upon me;
That I was trying to force those people to see me.
When all they could see was themselves.
And when I kept trying to paint myself into that picture; I would get washed out.

I see this happen with students and their horses often.
We try so hard to get them to see us, to feel our hearts, to see our try...
But in the process of that so very left brained try; we lose what is most important.
To just feel.
To just be.
In this one moment.
It is so healing.

We create the world around us which is respectful.
It shines respect out; so respect will come back in.
Our family here has a moral standard.
If our horses are not standing on grass, drinking clean water, eating daily fresh hay and socializing with their herd mates... we are not doing our job.

That idea continues to get me in trouble.
It sounds like I am condescending, I am calling people out.
But the truth is that if that statement offends you, or forces you to look at your own situation with a new light.

I'm glad it stirred in you.

I hope it inspires you to make change for your horses.
I hope it inspires you to go outside and do everything for them.

Because there is no respect that I cherish more, than that of my horses seeing me as their caregiver, their mother, their provider. And not because I forced them into it with a stick.
Because I lulled them to sleep with my touch,
I brought them fresh hay each day,
I cleaned their paddocks instead of going for a ride,
I washed their wounds,
I soothed their aching muscles,
I provided them shelter,
I provided them dry grassland,
I gave them a home.
I take the greatest pride in their healthy living to the best of my ability and resources.
And that is something no one will ever take from us.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

And then just go back to grazing...

I find myself lost in gratitude at times
when the whole world goes quiet and all that is left to be heard is the wind in the trees, the birds in the distance singing merry tunes to the sun and the gentle munching of grass...

Four solid hooves keeping foundation to a thousand pounds of precision.
Flowing mane amidst a mess of soul.

These beings are my salvation.
They keep me true.
Keep me safe.
And at peace.

They are here to listen.
To give me strength.
To give trust and gain trust 
To have confidence in one's self
To ask for confidence in them.

In a world of misplaced hate and cruel intentions I am lost with their most primal instincts.
How far ahead of us they are...
Herd instincts;
We may not like each other much but together we will survive..
No hoarding, only sharing.
Strict rules of membership but benefits galore.
Come be safe with us.
Come run and frolic...
Be free yet solid.
Chaos comes but only for an instant and then...

We just go back to grazing.