Horses as My Life Teachers

Bob - Marshall, Virginia
Entered on May 30, 2008
Age Group: 50 - 65
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Horses as My Life Teachers

I spent the early part of my life floundering. In my search to find my purpose, I was treading water. Being passionate about your life’s mission made sense but seemed unattainable. It was during this continual search that horses entered my life.

There are little signals that the universe sends telling you that you are on the right path. As a kid growing up whenever I watched the Triple Crown, it was like a bolt of electricity shooting through me. More like an adrenaline rush. Even thoughts about being a jockey entered my mind. As the years evolved, it was time to grow up and take my place in society. Boyhood dreams were to be put aside. Things like college, raising a family and getting on with your “career” were looming.

I have interacted with horses throughout my life but it wasn’t until the mid to late 1970’s that I actually took my first job as a groom/hot walker. My first wife had dabbled in horses, working at a riding camp. We married and continued to take care of horses for landlords or at other farms. It wasn’t until a divorce and a battle with alcohol and drugs did I realize that horses really did have a purpose in my life. I began to learn lessons about myself from these noble beasts. My second marriage brought in my true life partner, who is an accomplished horsewoman in her own right. Together we chose to spend our available days with these wonderful animals.

Trust issues are something I work on continuously. I always marveled how my horses would load onto a trailer – which amounts to a big metal box with slots where they distribute their weight and hunker down for the ride. These animals trust us implicitly. There must be something inside them that says to trust these humans and get on the trailer a second time. My lesson was to learn to trust that intuition that I frequently shoved aside. I still have to work on this.

I have learned the skill of massaging horses. I have discovered this to be my passion – my purpose. Massaging a horse is very different than working on another human. You learn to become a master of reading body language and non-verbal communication. They have taught me to trust my abilities, my skills and my power to heal. Anything that I have ever done, I questioned whether or not I was any good at this. There was no ego. My horse clients have taught me otherwise. One of my fondest memories is a working on a horse named Noir. Once into the session, he proceeded to play with his tongue to the point of smacking himself in the face with it. Hysterical to watch and witness.

The looks that they give me – those messages sent validate that I am good. Horses are my teachers – they have shown me trust, validation and a love for who and what we are. And this I Believe.