Horsey Therapist

Friday, January 30, 2009

Side by side

Strolling along, singing this song, side by side...

Not what I had in mind when I wrote the title. No. This is about danger and opportunity being side by side. This is about crises within which lie the seeds of creativity and surprise. This is about the storm whose eye is calm, about the height of the wave whose destiny is drawn with the ease of gravity to resolution. Paradoxes on the outside. Complements on the inside. Yin and yang. What is outside mingles with what is inside. What is inside infuses what is outside.

Side by side.

So as I spend a few minutes, a few hours, a few days, weeks, months living through circumstances I don't recall desiring, I am also rejoicing in the gifts that come side by side with the disturbances.

There is always another insight, another step closer to freedom from unconsciousness, with each crisis. At least in my life. I will not settle for getting upset about something. I need to know why I got upset. What happened to bring out such strong feelings. How much is this about Now, how much is this about Before. What can I think or do to release the distress and allow for calm to resume its rightful place.

This morning was approximately 5% about Now and 95% about Before. I am grateful that RNB recognized my state of emotional arousal and simply listened without taking it personally, without trying to fix me. It allowed for an opening inside me where I found things I had not previously connected to my present circumstances.

Things like giving to others. Giving everything to others. Giving because I had to, not solely because I wanted to. In the past, I wasn't living as if I had choices. Today I am, despite the moments when it feels like I don't have choices. I do still have choices. And I do make choices.

Sometimes the options seem limited, but that's another story for another day. By the time I publish this and some one of you reads this, this morning's upset will be a fading memory. I love the journey even if I don't always love the scenery.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What to do on a cold winter's day

Read and write, of course.

Most of my writing lately has been letters of interest as I send out my resume to yet more possible places of employment. Some of my writing continues to be via email lists where I explore the finer points of horse handling and riding. Some of my writing is the latest edition of a pilot project collaboration that we intend to be a 10 week equine facilitated educational experience for victims of domestic violence.

What else to do on a cold winter's day? Drink hot tea. And write notes -- those old fashioned hand-written things that require pen and paper, envelopes, stamps, and a walk to the end of the drive.

There is not yet enough accumulated snow to warrant wielding the shovel. That time will come in a few hours. It looks like one of those snowfalls that require me to shove open the back door of the barn so I can squeeze out and shovel from that side to free up the door.

I may or may not get in the car and go stoke the fire in the other house. The good thing about that house is we built in a 1400 gallon water storage tank and heat that, which in turn heats the house. With the help of tubes and pipes and a furnace that needs to run every couple of days.

It's a strange limbo. Winter is nature's time of hiding the potential and the potency of renewal. This year it feels like a winter of the psyche as well. A winter of many realms, where futures are hidden, and the times of release, revelation, and manifestation are yet to come. Themes of job seeking and soul searching mingle with snow management and financial surprises. It helps to know that struggles are endemic. It helps even more to know that hope is alive, and endemic as well.

The latest delight -- and that is a strange word to use -- is finding that RNB and I are comfortable looking at the options ahead of us. Not options that would ever wake us up in the night and make us exclaim: "Hey, I have a great idea! Wake up - I have to share my excitement!" No, not at all. But options that make sense. Options that reflect our ability to adjust, to revise, to adapt, to rejoin. Regarding our ability to rejoice together -- we do that on the dance floor. A form of nourishment remains consistent.

What to do on a cold winter's day? Read, write, reflect, ramble, and now go warm the fingers around a hot cup of tea.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A computer generated break

Because my usual computer is getting serviced, I am relying on my older computer to communicate in cyberspace. However there are many sites I am apt to visit that I cannot. My older computer's browser is not compatible with many of today's fancy-dancy websites. I had trouble with the expectedly simple signing in and arriving here where I could compose on my blog.

But here I am! -- with fingers crossed that what I write will end up published on my blog!

I prefer to take a break from computers because I choose to, like if I were traveling someplace where computer access is limited. Hard to imagine these days but so far, I do not have web access on a fancy satellite serviced phone. So if I were to go sailing, for example (and I'll take a moment to imagine the joys of being on a sailboat in a hot climate...) I would not check email, write on my blog, or check in with friends on Facebook.

This break is a result of a mechanical device needing service. Plain and simple. I wish I could report that I have maintained softness through this blip in my routine. I can report that I have re-found it. What a relief!

The horses are fuzzy and peaceful. I like getting bundled up and hanging out with them in the night. Unless the wind is blowing. It's peaceful in the winter. I suppose without various sounds from insects, or rustling of leaves, it is more quiet than in the summer. More still.

My focus for the past few months has been on increasing my time spent in paid employment. I am grateful for office projects at the therapeutic riding center where I teach. And I look in the paper and send out my resume, and look online and send out my resume, and sit down and think of places where I might work and send out my resume. I've never worked so hard nor spent so many weeks prior to being employed. Many new experiences for me as I transform from a happily partially employed quasi semi retired person to a person seeking full time or the equivalent of full time employment.

I hear David Bowie in my head singing, "Ch-ch-ch-changes!"

So, this break, due to computer malfunction, has been a break from time spent at the computer. I have been busy priming and painting walls at our new home. And moving hay from where we have it stored to where we keep the horses. And breaking ice in the water trough where the spring water flows slowly. And sending out my resume. I suppose I could be preparing last year's numbers for tax purposes... or going to bed at a reasonable hour. Hmmm, I like that idea....

I just noticed that I don't have the Preview Option on this computer's read of the blog site. That has been my favorite place for proof reading.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

If you ever get bored

If you ever get bored with what you are doing with your horses, consider something like this...

Die roten Teufel

An unsung song

I have spent my days stringing and unstringing my instrument while the song I came to sing remains unsung. -- Rabindranath Tagore


This quote reflects something that is starting to 'stare me in the face'. Because I/we need more cash flow, I have been job hunting. This region where I live offers little in my profession but now and then something gets posted and I apply. A job for which I've been called to interview is something I never thought I would do -- not only 'not my thing' but not feeling qualified.

I am challenging both those thoughts. For one, because of the value of increased cash flow right now, my interests are expanding. No, I am not applying for the Taco Bell job at the 'local' (50 minute drive each way) shopping area, but I am applying for social work jobs that specialize in areas I've never pursued.

The qualification aspect is another angle. I think it has to do more with my comfort zone than with my qualifications. I am pretty comfortable in my comfort zone, and the flip side, I have been very reluctant to venture outside my comfort zone professionally. Why?

Fear of failure basically. And until now, no need to venture far.

Funny that at a time when my life feels challenged to the gills already, I am feeling ready to take another challenge. Somehow my mind would say that when things are smooth, then I have room for a big challenge. Not so. Things were smooth, so let them stay that way. Maybe I'm feeling more confident and competent about handling the unusual because in fact, I feel like I'm living the unusual.

If you knew my history, you would wonder that I consider some of my current life so challenging and unusual. I have done some unusual things in the past. For me, living life in the same relationship, in the same community, amongst the same group of friends and acquaintances, paying the same bills month after month after month -- that was unusual. And now, is usual.

Two other thoughts about my underlying fears:

Fear of commitment -- to myself in a new role. What if I assume this new role and find it doesn't suit me? That would create a huge conflict with the parts of me that are loyal to commitments, that do not walk away without years of consideration.

Fear of success, and I think this is what the Tagore quote stimulates me to think about. I can practice, practice, practice. I can think about this job possibility and dismiss it in advance because I have limiting thoughts about who I would be in the job, how others would perceive me in the job, etc. etc. etc. Or, I can continue with the interview process, hope for the best in the immediate future and the long term future, and start singing a song that was growing roots before I moved to Vermont, perhaps start singing a song I have not yet hummed in my heart.

I am tearing up now, because this applies to my horsemanship and my ideas about teaching more, and all my limiting beliefs. It's not entirely about this job interview although this is creating an opening for me to see something deeper.

I wonder why I want to know how my song sounds before I ever open my mouth and release the music?

Perhaps more importantly I wonder if I will let that shift so I can simply start singing my song, whatever it is, in this realm of activities that not only might provide enjoyment but also can provide an inflow of energy -- cash or barter value.

Michael Phillips and others have said, 'follow your heart and the money will be there.' I need to release the doubts about knowing what my heart says. I really do know.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Miracle or coincidence?

I mention here "in public" that my computer is on the fritz, and gosh oh golly, it started up when I reached over to try (try, try) again. Strange ...

Computer woes while everything else looks rosy

I can't even access my online mail account to send email with this computer because it won't accept the password that I recall. I cannot access Facebook because this browser is apparently antique. So I will write something here and hope that any friends happen by to find out why they are not hearing from me. I think I can spread the word via a yahoo list or two, too. Strange to be using an older computer, like living in a time warp.

Sun is shining and I will go paint at the new place. Chilly but bright. Suits me just fine.

I talked with a man this morning who believes the key to being with horses is gaining understanding and control (my paraphrasing) over their tails. He has given me something to think about, and probably experiment with. And hopefully meet up with him again some day to chat more about this interesting idea.

And here I've been trying to gain understanding of the horse's mind. Ya know what? I'm going to keep up with this mind stuff, AND add some tail stuff to the experimenting.

Happy New Year to all.