I have spent my time making observations. I’ve been observing Billy while he is out in the pasture with Chloe. I’ve been observing myself, how I’m feeling, the things I’m drawn to, the people that I am looking to, how I feel when I am watching Billy. I’ve been really paying attention to how I feel. Am I tense? Anxious? Happy? Sad? Frustrated? Angry? When I identify how I feel then I take the time to get myself calm, focusing on my breath. I smile. I check back in and see how I’m feeling then.
Billy used to always be looking for me. Whenever I would step outside he would throw his head up, whinny and come racing to see what I was doing. This actually caused me quite a bit of anxiety because I felt like I needed to give him something, a cookie, a carrot, some scratching. SOMETHING. It was a lot of pressure. I found myself sneaking in and out of my house hoping Billy wouldn’t see me. I felt a little bit like I was on camera, constantly being watched. I couldn’t walk fast enough when I would take the dogs for a walk, trying to get out of Billy’s site. He would wait for me to come home from my walks and whinny and whinny while I walked the last 1/2 mile to the house, then race around and whinny and whinny at me from the corral. It was all too much.
After I bailed off and got hurt last month I basically locked myself away in the house to heal. I didn’t go out and see the horses for about a week after the accident. They have pasture and don’t need anything else. The weather was cooling off so Billy didn’t need his supplements. I just let myself heal and gave him some time to disconnect. I felt like we both needed that.
Today when I went for a walk Billy saw me walking out. He did come over and visit me at the fence and walked along the fence line for a little bit, but then he wandered off to graze and I walked away smiling. It made me think about how I felt when Billy would be so frantic to see me. It was then I could name it as a frantic feeling. If I was feeling that way I have to wonder how Billy was feeling. Frantic? Frazzled?
This led to me thinking about when Billy is dominant. I looked back over the most recent times that he behaved this way I realized that usually when he is being pushy and bossy, he is unconfident. This is not something he is doing because he wants to boss or dominate me. I think he is being that way because he is unsure and worried and shows it by pushing, pinning his ears and getting big with his body. How interesting!
I’m content to just be observant right now. I’m reading and watching everything that Anna Marciniak shares on Facebook. Soaking it in, taking it to heart. It’s always very beautiful and poetic. Sometimes I ask her questions and she is very kind and answers them. I’ve been paying attention to Elsa Sinclair over at Meditations on Equestrian Art.
Something both of these lovely ladies have in common is the desire to cultivate a relationship with their horses that does not involve force, the word make or the use of tools. This is something I’m interested in right now because BOTH of my broken arms have been giving me lots of trouble, achy and quite weak. I’ve had some pain in both arms so having a horse at the end of a rope or swinging a stick and string are both very difficult at this time. I do sometimes take out a light weight bamboo stick to use as an extension of my arm but am interested in cultivating something deeper, better. Even if it means I don’t ride for awhile.
So for now I am going to observe and try to develop a deeper understanding of Billy and most importantly, of myself.