“Be who you are and say how you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” — Dr. Seuss
My horse Remington, living in his new home in a pasture, with two other horses….is teaching me about how to be myself. It’s kind of a silly statement, really, because who else would I be but myself?
But having the experience of being with three horses in a pasture, all untethered, vying for my attention, and who could at any moment burst into a run, throw each other a buck or a kick to get closer to me (because they know I always come with offers of affection, good will and the occasional carrot or apple) requires me to not only be on my toes and acutely aware at all times, but to be the herd leader. I’ve never had this experience…..of working at liberty with three horses at once and I’m finding it to be thrilling, sometimes nerve wracking, occasionally funny, but mostly a tremendous opportunity to be fully present and completely in my skin.
I’ve always worked one-on-one with horses, and have learned over the years the importance of being clear with my telepathic communication and body language, and gentle but firm with my consistent leadership. This pasture experience takes it up several notches, requiring me to ask myself “Who am I really?” Am I clear enough with my own strengths, weaknesses, thoughts, emotions, intentions and confidence to be amongst these sometimes fresh, feisty boys and still create a safe experience of harmony, fun and peace for everyone?
Horses (as with all animals) never question their own identity; they just are. The art of just being is their gift. I am so blessed to have these pasture experiences, these opportunities to learn from not only my own horse, but from the other two about equine social structure, the horse-way of living and most importantly, the the art of being myself.