Horsey Therapist

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Deep, easy changes

[I retrieved this from my drafted entries and finally could add a picture! Apologies if you have heard this story already.]

I spent 2 days auditing and 3 days riding with Mark Rashid in late October. I had wanted to take Sofia but she was off at the trot so I took Rusty. I'm very glad I did.

Mark is remarkable. No pun intended. I have spent decades messing around extensively with energy, body awareness, meditation, and projecting thoughts and intentions. This experience with Mark was the first time all that sort of 'stuff' was present integrated with horsemanship.

Mark's life includes Aikido. I have no personal experience of it other than what he shared during an evening participatory 'demonstration'. I got a feel for what he calls "blending". And I had opportunities during my clinic time to start practicing that, to develop a better feel for 'blending', for making contact, feeling for an opening, and directing my horse. The goodness of this is beyond words.

OK, back to where I intended to start.

Day 2 of riding, Mark said to me, "Are you ready to hear something?"

I hesitated for one millisecond, letting the question sink in, then looking at Mark with eagerness I felt right from my center, I said, "Yes!"

He told me that the fronts of my shoulders are blocked, and these blocks are preventing Rusty from moving his shoulders. He described how Rusty was reaching forward with his front feet but he did not bring them back, so his stride was stopped. He proceeded to suggest I let these areas fill with energy, or light, or however I wanted to think about it. It was not a mechanical thing for me to fix, just bring my awareness there and let there be life there, enliven those areas.

I did. Immediately I could feel the areas in the front of my shoulders begin to buzz with energy -- energy flowed up through those areas and out in an upwards direction, allowing warmth, energy flow, tears, laughter, and big sounds rolling out of my belly up through this release. My eyes were wide, my body was soft, and this release was happening.

When I started riding again, with this feeling of life in the front of my shoulders, Rusty started finding a normal stride. It took some time going both directions before it felt solid, where I was allowing the energy and the openness, and Rusty was regular with his normal stride. At first Mark was giving me feedback when it was happening, then I could feel it. Then we brought this to the trot. Oh what a clear difference when Rusty could trot a normal stride!!! No more feeling like I'm riding a sewing machine! That poor horse, constricted in his movement all these years because of blockage in my energy. Phew!

[Thanks to Pam Y for the picture!]


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