What is it about an equine that gets into your soul and calms you? I read an feature article yesterday at work about an Equine Therapy place that is local. The reporter did a really fine job of relating how horses are so good for the inner soul of a person.
Ariel is visiting and had her first real riding lesson on Fred the Mule.
Fred is probably in mule years beyond ancient, and at approximately 32 yrs old, he still looks great. This is probably because he is a pony mule and yes, they do live longer than the big ones!
My husband had Fred all clipped up and just about ready to go by the time I got home from my long shift.
Of course Fred was going to be a bit dancy and prancy [ok probably not spelled correctly] at first. And,
But Ariel stepped into the stirrup and swung her leg up like an old pro. We started by just working on finding her balance and seat. It is something that is hard to 'teach' so it is more of a thing where the person has to feel it themselves.
I have taught a few kids in the 4H Horseless Horse program in years passed and enjoyed the experience. I love a good animal and an attentive young person.
Ariel and Fred made a great combination.
I actually incorporated some Tai Chi methods while Ariel was in the saddle. I used the breathing method and inner calm I felt from Tai Chi while leading and talking with Ariel.
Fred calmed down and got very sensible incredibly fast.
It didn't take Ariel long to find her seat and her center of balance. And soon she was riding in a relaxed manner with her hands and shoulders relaxed, she would drop her feet from the stirrups and ride just with her seat only.
That is impressive.
"When I ride I feel like the rest of the world has dropped away and I am transported to another place that is peaceful and calming. I feel like I am in a magical wonderful place." This I told to Ariel.
Oh will she understand this yet? I don't know.
I recall the summer nights I spent at my Uncle's place learning to ride and fall off from his pony, Thunder. I wasn't finding inner peace and tranquility at that time, I was just a young girl loving her every moment on an ornery old pony. He was hard to catch, hated to ride, didn't want to follow directions and...well.
He was the perfect mount for me to learn on.
I learned young. This undated photo is one my father took when I first started to ride...and fall off.
This was Sugar Babe, my Uncle's horse that he acquired while he was a soldier in the cavalry in WWII. At least that is what I think he had said.
Here I am at that awkward age of 16. My sister is on Charlie Brown, the tall horse.
I am on Thunder.
Little did I realize how much my relationship with horses would effect my later life. I thought I'd never own one after I grew up or could own one of my own.
Both my sister and I are equine enthusiasts.
Horses/mules have a special way of entering your heart and spirit.
I hope to pass some of that magic on to my Grandchildren as well.