To begin, I want to thank Denise Milledge who’s blog Mystic the Mustang, has inspired me to share my stories of Dreamweaver Sunday now, instead of waiting until I come to some determined ending. Denise posted a few times to my personal FB page and I realized that she was a new mama too! She shared the link to her blog and her words touched my heart. The images of Mystic Moon bucking and kicking up his heels brought tears to my eyes. I knew I’d met a kindred spirit, one who had the courage to take a risk and change the life of a sentient being. I have come to realize that my story with Sunday has just begun. I don’t anticipate it ending anytime soon, so why not share the chapters now? Denise, I look forward to sharing this exquisite journey we have embarked on and learning from one another’s adventures. I have decided to call these musings Sundays with Sunday: Shove S**T, Carry Water and although this may seem self-explanatory, there is a lot more to it that has to do with how she and I came to be and why I’ve chosen not to change the name she was apparently given by her former owner-whoever that was.
Unlike Denise, I have no formal horse training skills. I was a rider. The photo above shows the first time I remember sitting on a horse. I was three. I formally rode and showed horses from about age 6 to 13, but I never owned my own horse. When I showed up at the barn my horse was groomed and saddled. I took the reins from the barn groom, mounted-knee up-and went out in the arena to work with my trainer and have my lesson. During these lessons it was all about “the ride,” learning to sit properly, walk, trot canter and keep the horse in line. As I remember it, aside from the end of the lessons, when I could finally bury my nose into the horses fur and inhale that deep, earthy, scent, it was never about having a relationship WITH the horse. I remember being told to never let horse get away with anything and to kick harder or smack it with my crop if it was misbehaving. None of this every felt good mind you, but I did as I was told, I didn’t know any better. Yes…I was a “good little girl.” I did love my trainer Jimbo, who was from Ireland, but as we know, we pass on what we know, be it right, wrong or indifferent. I’m sure it was what he was taught and he shared his knowledge with us. This was the late 60’s. I’m not sure how many people there were who knew what Natural Horsemanship meant. Oh, my heart grieves for what I didn’t know then, as I know it to be now.
As much as I disliked competing and would literally get nauseous before I had to go in the ring, the lessons and the shows were an answer to a young girls longing, a means to an end, and the only way I could connect with those beautiful, bold, powerful creatures. Even then I knew there was something there for me, although I could never have understood it in the way I do now. For me there was a deep yearning to BE with the horse, almost an ache. I felt this long into adulthood, each time I would be near a horse or witness a herd running wild and free with tails held high, through a rich, green pasture. I notice now that Sunday has arrived, that terminal ache has subsided. I no longer feel that desire in the pit of my stomach or the deep need to reach out and touch a soft nose behind a strangers fence.
I think I have searched for my equine partner all my life. I always thought that I would “choose MY” horse, Now I understand that they choose US. Sunday chose me and she made that clear from the first time our eyes met and she followed me at Liberty around the round pen. I could almost hear her say, “We are meant for one another, I’m the one you’ve been searching for. Please take me home.”
Up next…How Dreamweaver called me home….I’d love to hear your thoughts and your own stories. Please feel free to share by commenting below.