Monday, February 23, 2015

Trusting Yourself: Lessons in Listening to Your Body with Horses

We've been looking for a SAFE & SOUND horse for my husband Greg now, for a LONG time! Recently, we thought we'd finally found him!

Ollie was a solid draft cross, who was calm to the jumps and seemed to enjoy taking care of his rider. I mean, look at these two! They appeared precious together.

Greg thanking Ollie for a nice ride

But something was off....the story given to us by the seller just didn't "add up." And worse, after our initial glowing visit, every time I thought about moving forward with Ollie, I felt my body all clench up.  

 Soon, a nagging little voice in my head started calmly proclaiming: Trust Yourself.

Whenever we're going to make a very important decision about horses, we always have a call with our favorite animal communicator, so we went ahead and had a conversation about Ollie. Well, as an animal intuitive AND horse trainer, she LOVED him!

One of our concerns was that he was a tad out of our budget range, but she assured us he was WORTH EVERY PENNY! Her advice: This was the horse we were waiting for. Go snap him up and live happily ever after!

Trouble was, even with her glowing input, every time I thought about Ollie, my entire body turned into knots, my head hurt, and my stomach churned. 

But WHY?, I kept wondering. He seemed like a good match.

 Yet all week, I kept hearing over and over: Trust Yourself.

I scheduled a second visit with Ollie, but I continued to be troubled about the way I FELT about him.

So, on the eve of our next meeting, I reached out to another animal communicator to get a second opinion. This was a HUGE decision for us and I DID NOT want to make a "mistake."

Greg had a heck of a year last year, after not having been hurt by horses in over 20 years, he had broken an arm needing surgery, got a concussion needing an ER visit, and fell off and couldn't walk for a week!

After all of THAT,  I really, REALLY didn't want an error in judgement.

This 2nd communicator also liked Ollie, but a slightly different picture of the horse emerged. While the horse wasn't specific, he couldn't assure us that Greg wouldn't fall off of him.

This lined up with my own feeling that somehow, one of us might get hurt with this horse.

Which frankly, didn't make any real sense when we met him, because he was calm as a cucumber and carried a little 9 year old over fences like he was her trusted uncle.

So I left that session still confused! What on earth should I do? I simply couldn't find the YES in my body.

And still that little voice kept nagging, Trust Yourself.

And to be honest, my body was sending some super clear signals.  Every time I considered adding Ollie to our family, I felt, in one word: YUCK.

I was getting a red light on the level of my body. Which reminded me of our equine-assisted teacher & faciliator Kathleen Barry Ingram who likes to say that  "the body is a sensing device."

Indeed! My body was giving me a very clear message: NO.  It was a RED light!

This was interesting because in the previous weeks, I had re-learned what a Green Light felt in my body.  It felt clear, open, light and RIGHT. This learning occurred when I was trying to determine if a woman who seemed like a good home for our horse Little Man, really was the right match (because she lived 6 hours away so we couldn't actually meet). Although it was hard for my head to trust, in my body, all I could feel was YES...all green lights on every level!

And this feeling about Ollie was in stark contrast: my body wasn't showing me the path forward, it was giving me a clear STOP sign. But still I argued with my mind, because the apparent facts of the matter didn't line up with what I was FEELING.

They seemed wonderful together!

Bottom line: I was having trouble TRUSTING MYSELF.

Right before our scheduled second visit, the trainer began to add a little pressure to the situation, saying that if we wanted him we'd have to put a deposit on him the next day, when we tried him again.  So I made a last ditch effort to contact Ollie's previous owner to learn more about his history.

Lo and behold, the real reason why my body kept saying NO revealed itself!

It turns out that Ollie has a long history of seeming calm, but then bucking people off, HARD, and people getting hurt. There was literally a years-long trail littered with people on the ground. His previous owner had taken him knowing this history and tried to help him, and still wasn't successful.

Now, it felt to me that Ollie did have a good heart inside and perhaps has always been misunderstood. He deserved another chance with someone who could truly partner with him and allow him to blossom into a wonderful trustworthy partner.

But I also knew, that given our circumstances, we weren't the right place for that to happen. And so, we let him go.

That was the day that I THANKED my body for a clear signal and decided that I would ALWAYS, ALWAYS trust myself moving forward. 

Because the BODY NEVER LIES!

No matter what everyone else tells you, YOU KNOW what's best for you.
Nevermind what trainers or sellers tell you.
Nevermind what trusted animal communciators might offer.

Your own body will speak clearly if you listen.

Are you listening?
Do you stop for a moment when making a decision and ASK your body?

Feel into what you notice in your body when you ask.
Does it feel like a yes, no, maybe? Does it feel open and light, or tight and closed? 

Practice asking when you are out with your horses!
They can help you sense more clearly- since they hold coherent energy in their body fields, they help you match that coherence, where you can feel into Truth more easily.

Experiment with decisions small and large, and soon you'll know exactly what your body is trying to tell you!

Now here's a wonderful tip for increasing your ability to hear your own intuition through your body!  
Consider your Diet.
For months, my inner guidance said it was time to stop drinking coffee, but I resisted for a long time.

AFTER I finally relented and released caffeine, it helped to clear my intuitive channels and I began hearing messages much more clearer and more often! Part of the problem with caffeine, is that it changes the sensations in your body, making it harder to use it as a clear sensing device!

Of course, my next guidance was that meat, wheat, sugar, and diary needed to go. Talk about my resistance now!

Then one of our wonderful teacher-facilitators Pam Allen LeBlanc of Hidden Brook Farm, suggested the book, Angel Detox by Doreen Virtue. Upon reading it, I discovered that ALL of those substances can clog up our intuitive channels, making it hard to hear & sense our Inner Guidance! This book also has wonderful suggestions on how to detox from all of these substances and more. Highly recommended.

So now I am one week into releasing the rest of these denser energy foods and I'm pretty sure that soon, my Guidance will be loud and clear whenever I stop to tune in.

Ready for more Intuitive Tips?
Join us on Thursday March 2, during the 2015 Tele-Summit, to learn more tips, tools, and processes for heightening your intuition alongside of horses.  

Wendy Golding of Horse Spirit Connections in Canada will be teaching her session: On Demand Intuition- Activating Your Most Powerful Facilitation Relationship with Horses.

You'll get actual practice tuning into your guidance with horses during this fun, engaging, and experiential session.

See you then!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Letting Go of Little Man: How One Horse Helped Heal My Heart

At the Happily Ever After Ranch, we intend to give every one of our horses a lifetime home. However, sometimes, you start to have a knowing that a certain horse has a different destiny calling him forward.
Yet, even when you know you're making the right decision, letting go can be fraught with all sorts of emotions, including sadness, guilt, loss, regret, and doubt...emotions which can muddle a "clean break." As the date of Little Man's departure neared, I was feeling all of this and more...thankfully Little Man himself had the perfect plan.
Little Man at 2 yo
It was a gorgeous sunny afternoon so I took the opportunity to do some energy & body work for my horses, who were dozing gently in the sunshine.  It was several days before Little Man's scheduled trip to his new home, so I wasn't really thinking about Goodbyes. 

But according to Little Man, today WAS a delicious day to clear the way for a beautiful goodbye. 
Three of my herd were gathered around for an energy healing and body work session, including my head mare Serendipity, her daughter Frolic, and our Pegasus, Little Man. As I worked on Seren's, then Frolic's body, we all dropped further and further into the Zone: the quiet, still space where things can most easily Shift.

Seren & Frolic: In the Zone
As I finished with Frolic, I noticed that Little Man was standing nearby, totally in the Zone with us. As a youngster, his attention span is often short and he doesn't always stay "with" us, yet there he was, eyes closed, neck lowered, nostrils breathing deeply, occasionally licking & chewing along with the other two.

Knowing Little Man had recently tweaked his neck in the ice & mud we'd been having, I figured it was as good a time as any to offer him some parting healing as well, so I sauntered quietly over to him and tried to lay my hands on his neck.

He refused. Three times. He had a better idea.

He correctly intuited that it was ME who needed the healing.

And so, in one of the ONLY times he's ever offered healing energy, Little Man set about ensuring we created a clear space for a beautiful goodbye.
Little Man & Jenn, 3 yo

While patently refusing to allow me to touch HIM, he made it very clear that he wanted to touch ME.
And he knew exactly where to begin his work: My heavy heart.

Now if you know Little Man, you'll know he's mouthy. You never quite trust that he'll keep his "hands" to himself. 
But today, he very gently and very specifically, with great respect, began to take energy off of my heart space. He'd nuzzle my chest, then yawn, releasing what he picked up. Over and over again, he did the same thing: gently grabbing some stuck energy around by heart with his mouth, and then yawning to let it go.
In fact, the gentleness with which he went about this was quite astounding for him!

Nuzzle, yawn, nuzzle, couldn't be more obvious what he was going. Oh, yeah, except the tears, that made it pretty clear too!

As he worked his way through my heart layers, he spoke to me of Goodbyes. 
He spoke of gratitude and appreciation for all that he had been offered here. Of honoring the courage and bravery to do the right thing by finding him a place he could flourish. Of the beauty of letting go, when there are expansive new adventures which will bring empowerment, satisfaction, and fulfillment. 
And oh, how I cried, as our Little Man, a tiny, gawky yearling when he arrived, fully embodied this blossoming wisdom that now lived in a gorgeous 16.0 hand bay body.  
Little Man, 6 yo: All Grown Up!
And then he moved onto my head, grabbing stuck energy from the left side of my head and continuing the same pattern: nuzzle, yawn, nuzzle, yawn.

It was as if he wanted to show me ALL he had learned while he was here. Though he rarely choose to USE this healing ability while here, he wanted me to know that he had picked up a great deal of WISDOM by watching this herd for all these years. 

In fact, he made it clear he intended to share this wisdom with his new partner, in their new home.

And so layer by layer, we dissolved the emotions that stood in the way of a good, clean break, till we stood, ensconced in appreciation and love for each other's BEINGNESS...and the tears flowed more as I realized what a beautiful being he had grown up into.

A beautiful being who was now ready, in fact, eager for the next chapter of his life story to unfold, with new games, new adventures, new partnerships, and yes, even a brand new gelding friend, something he's wanted for years!
Little Man with Marnie, in his new home in the forest!
Little Man being ponied with his new friend, Zeus

So THANK YOU Little Man, for showing me how to let you go gracefully, in full acknowledgement of the beauty of what has been, without regrets, and with full appreciation for the grand door that is opening that will usher you more fully into ALL who you are meant to become. 

We love you Little Man, even if you really are BIG now! Big of heart and big of body. May your Pegasus wings spread peacefully & powerfully over all whose lives you touch moving forward.

Little Man in a CO sunset

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Looking for Another PERFECT HOME!

It took us 3 patient years to find the ideal home for Little Man! We have one other gelding who would thrive in the perfect home with his special someone to devote time & energy to him. 
His name is Galaxy and he's a gorgeous, 7yo, 17 hand, black, off-the-track TB gelding. Due to neck injuries at the track, he will never be a sport horse prospect, but he is currently rideable w/t/c as a light pleasure mount (no heavy duty training)
He is curious with an active mind and so wants something to do! Parelli, games, light riding, agility, liberty work, you name it, he'd like to try it. Although he is generally calm & somewhat lazy by nature, as a BIG TB, he can be exuberant and spirited (tho respectful), so requires a confident, experienced partner.  Requires shelter, large living space, and turnout/pasture with friends & room to run! Prefer a long-term, free lease in CO, but will consider other ideal homes. 
If you know someone who might LOVE this charismatic gelding, please be in touch, he deserves a wonderful home:

Below are some pictures and here is a link to a video where he is lying down while I'm chatting about the vision for the collective...shows you part of his personality (and his snoring!):
Galaxy and Jenn, less than one week off the track

Galaxy, during a 6 month lease

Galaxy with Ali, a college student who leased him    

Greg riding Galaxy the first time!

Lunging Galaxy
2 Handsome Men!