When I first brought Remington into my life, he was being trained as a Western Pleasure Show Horse. At first, it seemed like the kind of life he would enjoy. But, as I’ve shared in earlier posts, that most certainly was not to be the case.
Since moving him to a beautiful Farm where he lives in a large pasture with William, a 2-year old Warmblood who is learning to grow up naturally and Luke, a retired Quarter Horse, Remington has blossomed into the young, happy horse he was meant to be. No longer living in stalls, trained every day, refrained from having much interaction with other horses, kept in spit-shine condition and having his life dominated by what two-leggeds wanted him to do, he is thriving. He’s got nicks and bite marks on his coat from playing with his buddies, is some times muddy and dirty from being allowed to be out in the elements, has his friends for protection and companionship and many days thinks he’s in charge of the world.
Our life together now is as different as night and day. I see him twice a week and we spend time in the pasture with the other horses, but more importantly, we have started back at square one with our relationship. I am helping him remember that although he does not have to live the restricted life of a horse who is ridden, I am still his human mom and his human leader. We leave his buddies in the pasture while we walk around the ranch and practice being focused and quiet. We visit some of the other horses, allowing him to get to know his neighbors. Our grooming time is all about companionship, communication and being respectful, not about quickly getting cleaned up to be ridden. We spend time grazing on the lush grass that has sprung up after some much needed rain. And when we return to the pasture, he is learning that although Luke is his equine herd leader, when I am present with all three of them, I am their human leader.
Remington and I are healing, experiencing a re-birth of sorts. He is remembering what it’s like to be a horse, with his own sense of identity, and how to be a respected member of a herd. And I am healing from a lengthy period of injuries and many months of both physical and emotional pain. In so many ways, we are reflecting each other…..traveling a similar path towards wholeness and peace.
I will always remember what my beloved Romeo (who was a retired show horse when I bought him and who died almost three years ago) told me about Remington. “He has come to you so that you may give him a different life than I ever had.” Little did I realize that it would be this kind of life, or that Remington would be the catalyst for my own healing as well as his own.