I am reading Margrit Coates’ Connecting with Horses and in it she speaks a lot about how horses teach humans, if we humans are open to learning. With this in mind, I think about a small interaction Ben and I had this morning.
This morning is their first breakfast back home: Ben and Rosie are being limited to the grass around the track but after breakfast Ben looks optimistially through the open shed door which has extra hay bales inside:
Of course, I being soft bring out two small slices of hay for Ben and Rosie and put them on the ground at opposite ends of the yard area. I had intended to sit and relax with them this morning as a way of re-connecting, but a small challenge from Ben changed this. For he took the hay on the track end of the yard, with his rear end firmly turned towards Rosie, who was waiting further up the track. I wanted a peaceful time with the ponies, so I tried to entice Rosie past Ben. She was having none of this. So I upped my energy and chased Ben off the hay. He barely moved, so I upped my energy again. Eventually he ended at the far end of the yard, watching me, waiting to see if I would leave a gap for him to get through. Rosie had retreated further with all this going on.
I felt clumsy in my attempts to keep Ben at that end of the yard, but as we did our little dance, I came into my body and felt myself centering, with my energy all in my core. And as this happened I had to move less and less, barely tipping my hips towards Ben. I also felt energised and as I centered like this Ben relaxed, dropped his head, sniffed out some blades of grass and settled to eating his hay.
Rosie had moved up the track and waited. I went to her, leaving the yard to do so. Ben stayed where he was and Rosie followed me to the other slice of hay.
If I think about that interaction in terms of what Ben was teaching me, it seems like he was teaching me to come into my body energetically, to centre myself and he kept me moving until I had one so. Lesson over, he relaxed. I thought I was teaching him to allow Rosie at her hay, but I think he was instead teaching me, saying, effectively “wake up!”