Last week was one of those times when I was sweating the small stuff, and just felt off. I was struggling through my routine and didn’t possess my usual enthusiasm. I had to make a tough decision (to find our puppy a new home), and like all tough decisions it tugged at my heart in uncomfortable ways. Soooo, by yesterday I was ready for a day away. As in, a day when I didn’t have to organize myself (and others) to be places at certain times, didn’t have obligations or expectations, nothing. And I headed to horsecamp to just be with the horses.
For many people, including myself, heading out to the horses mostly means riding. But I was also craving some unstructured horse time, to watch them, touch them, talk to them. I even shoveled horse poop. It was a beautiful, sunny day in Bozeman, and the perfect temperature. I went into the horse pen and milled around with them, without that pressure to get who I needed and get out; instead of eyeing me warily, many of them came to me of their own accord (horses move away from any kind of pressure, physical or energetic, so if you blast into their space on some kind of mission, you can bet they will be moving to get away from you fast). I watched a brief training session with some friends’ new horses. I learned more about tack. I rode whoever I was drawn to, which after the last few months riding my own horse Dude Boy, was refreshing. After a long grooming session, Ollie and I went out in the field and I worked him into quite a sweat (which meant more grooming afterwards, just touching a horse is its own form of therapy!). Janice, and our little horse posse and I ate lunch outside when we got hungry instead of when it was “lunchtime”. And I finished the day on Tango, from whose back I watched someone else ride my horse, and learned a lot from seeing that. We opened up and pushed the horses into a gallop, which is still very new for me; when I think about the fear I have left behind and the freedom I now enjoy on horseback, it makes me warm and fuzzy all over.
Every once in awhile I wondered what Morgane was doing, what I should pick up for dinner, what was left on my to-do list for the week…but then someone (equine) would snort or neigh or push me with their soft nose and I was back in the moment again. Right where I belonged. After I got home I could feel the mood-enhancing, grounding effects of my day away, and before I fell asleep I was recalling and savoring all the moments I was so blessed to experience yesterday.
What can you do to change things up and enjoy your own day away…?
I highly recommend it. Here’s another picture of Janice and me by Walter Lockwood, on our gorgeous boys Bridger and Dude Boy.