She will not put her leg up on the low mounting block. Stiff. Tight. As I gently stretch one leg forward she pulls back hard. I needed to make her better for the farrier – I had a goal – in the midst of the manure of life.
I was face to face with what I taught. Over and over I repeated this phrase to others. “It not about getting it done – it’s about the journey.” I was reminded to stop and be with her in this step of the journey. Had we been to this place many times? Yes, oh yes. But she needed it again today. She needed to “fail” into love – again.
I rubbed her legs. I changed any posture of mine that I thought she may perceive as pressure. I changed my thought – no – changed my thinking. It was trust I began thinking – not the pressure of getting the hoof on the mounting block. It was peace I wanted to offer her – peace inside that settles trust.
I pick up her leg again. The mounting block was way in the back of my thinking. Her peace – her trust is want I so wanted to feel. There – – – as I change – – – I quietly feel some of her tension let go. Her head bows. I gently let down her leg and rub in more love. I try again – now with the joy of feeling more softening. I was reaching a place that had nothing to do with the task. Her heart was trying. I soften more with her try.
This journey was deep – going where only trust could go.
We walked this journey for a while – softly together. Consideration and asking being offered. A little trust offered by Shiloh. Then a snatch back of her leg. “It’s not about the mounting block.” We continue to work the deeper thing.
As I feel her trying trust, I rub that trust in deep. I thank her for that try. I dare not ask more than she can give. Trust would be lost. I welcome her “fail”, because I know it is not ‘fail’ really. It is a want-to into trying. It is testing the trust.
Her eyes soften as she dares to believe that trust. My heart breathes in that softening. My thoughts dance over her. I smile. We continue forward in the trust journey.
Do I want to ask her hoof to touch the mounting block? Will she continue to soften and trust? Now my mind goes to the mounting block – ready to be interrupted by the “fail”. She’s softly trusting – I softly ask. She lowers her head and reaches deep in for more trust. Her hoof touches the mounting block. Shiloh’s head bends in toward me – checking to see if I approve. I rub in the approval!
Most of Shiloh’s training, even at the beginning with me, was her waiting for a harsh correction when she “failed” to do the right thing. I know that way, Shiloh – I too have lived in that harshness many years. It has now been 10 years since I have been training a new way – a way for us to go deeper to the trust of the journey. This trust journey goes on and on – day after day – challenge after challenge – but the harsh memories run deep. How long will it take for Shiloh to trust that she will “fail” into love?
How long, Shiloh? How long will it take us … to trust “failing” into love?