All of our herd members have different gifts they share with us, different lessons to learn or different insights into offer.
It’s funny really because when we offer a horse a place in our family it is usually because in our eyes they need something we can give, whether it’s knowledge or experience of something they’re going through, somewhere they can heal physically, mentally and emotionally or somewhere to call their forever home.
In reality all we really do is offer a ‘space’ for them to be the horse they always were and time to get back to their true selves. Then, and it happens every time, they begin to share wisdom, lessons and for want of a better description reveal why our paths have crossed and our lives have come together.
Gizmo is a prime example of this. He came into my life as a 4 month old foal, wild as the wind, terrified of humans in every form and more than willing to put himself in danger to avoid contact of any kind. That was over 15 years ago. With time and patience we formed a bond and although he is still very wary of strangers, particularly those who have an agenda or who aren’t being true to themselves – in his words “why do some people say one thing and then do the other?” He has grown into a very wise, very affectionate, very self aware and very well respected pony within the herd. He is who he is and his quiet energy resonates this.
He is as grounded as they come in more ways than one and has told a friend who is an animal communicator that he “can feel vibrations through the earth, like elephants do“.
There is a reason for this background story and it goes something like this…..
It’s winter here, wet, muddy, cold, muddy, dark….did I mention it’s muddy! Although having kept our herd living out all year round for over 15 years now means I am pretty resilient to it all, as I have come to learn that the herd are completely fine as long as they have plenty of hay, somewhere to get out of the wind, are able to move freely and they can be together, every year, usually around this time I have a ‘wobble’. I should know by now it’s coming and be able to fend it off but it always creeps up on me until I’m shouting at Storm Bob or Carol or whatever this ones been called and struggling with it all not just physically but emotionally too. Each year I get through it and by the following winter it’s forgotten but the truth is it’s usually one of the herd who snaps me out of it and reminds me of how lucky I am and how amazing it all is.
This time it was Gizmo (and he’s done a similar thing before in different circumstances) . I was doing my evening checks, making sure everyone was eating well, warm, comfortable….all the normal things and as had been the case for a few days now worrying about how the seemingly continual rain and relentless mud was affecting everyone. I checked everyone, did what I needed to do and was heading back to the gate to go home when I heard a horse call. Now it wasn’t one of ours as it came from the wrong direction but in that moment Gizmo popped into my head and suddenly I couldn’t remember if I’d seen him. I was sure I had but…..well, you know when you doubt yourself….so I went back to check, expecting him to be munching on the round bales with his friends.
He wasn’t anywhere near the rest of the herd….
So, I set off in the dark to find a 10hh dark bay pony in a maybe 8 acre paddock…not an easy task and as each minute passed without finding him, my heart beat a little faster and my adrenaline crept a little higher.
Eventually out of the corner of my eye I spotted a darker spot in the corner of the field and let a huge breath of relief out as I got to him and checked him to find him perfectly fine. Then as I was bending down to check his legs he put his head on my shoulder and basically pulled me down to my knees, where he pulled me into his warm chest with his head and neck and relaxed his weight onto me.
That was when I twigged!!
This was an intentional ‘disappearance’ to get me on my own and make me stop and breathe for a minute. As I said before it’s not the first time Giz has ‘grounded’ me in this way, both spiritually and in fact physically by bringing me down to the ground and into his ’embrace’.
So, we stayed like that for maybe 20 minutes, me crouched down with my hands snuggled into the warmth of Gizmo’s shoulder and neck and him with his head and neck wrapped over my shoulder holding me gently but firmly, with my cheek buried into his chest. Then I noticed how beautiful the stars were and how clear the sky was, I could hear the herd on the other side of the paddock munching contentedly on their hay and the wild animals and birds settling in for the night or just stirring to begin their nightly journeys, I could smell the grass under our feet and the frost on the air and I could feel everything…..the breeze on my face, Gizmos breath on my neck, the warmth of his body against mine and most importantly, the beautiful, gentle, positive natural energy all around us, running through us and between us, the herd, the life within our field and the night. Gizmo had bought me home again.
When it was time to go, we both took a long slow breath and I told him how much I loved him and thanked him for bringing me back to myself and to the energy of the herd and in my heart I felt the words “We’re OK, It will be OK“….and I know again that it will.
The pictures are from another time Gizmo has grounded me to give you an idea of what it’s like – I didn’t get one this time as it was pitch black.