Sometimes our horses ask us to assist them in doing difficult things. Their higher self, or the self that wants to progress, has a desire or goal. But their current horse-self just can’t do it. So the horse asks us to support them in the physical realm to achieve their goal. Sometimes this ‘support’ may look or feel a lot like dominance – both to an observer and ourselves. The best way I can describe what happens and what this dance looks like, is to tell you a story…
Almost one year ago, baby June-bug (okay he was 4 years old – but he was still our baby) decided to leave his mama and the herd, and go 16 hours North to Kesia’s ranch – with his Dad and Uncle Jax. When the trailer arrived, the horses were all free (not on lead ropes) and so it was entirely their choice who, if anyone, wanted to go. Big Mama Audelina never came within 20 feet of the trailer, just stood back and watched, as Jax, Montaro, Cobra and Juno left the paddock and approached the trailer parked at the end of the barn road. The trailer could fit four, if two of them squished into one of the 3 box stalls – but not comfortably.
Neither of the two possible trailer-loading areas I had prepped – where the horses could load from an arena directly onto the trailer – worked for the driver, so he just backed it as close to the driveway as he could. We closed off the open side of the driveway with arena panels, but the entire length of the barn road was open to the woods that ran alongside it; which opened to a public road in a suburban area. Again, we had to exist in the balance of the physical and the spiritual. Any of the 4 horses on the barn road could have nipped off through the small strip of woods and run right out onto the road – the trees were more of a suggestion, than a barrier. This is where I was in surrender to their spiritual-self – that we were all in this together and they actually wanted to get on that trailer.
I haltered the 3 lads, but Cobra (who couldn’t be touched at all at that point) was unhaltered and at some points was foraging in the woods while the 3 lads went through their trailer process. I connected to Cobra energetically/spiritually/telepathically and sent him pictures of the dangers the road led to, and that it would be crazy stressful for me if he went through the woods to the road, and he stayed close for the 2 hours it took the lads to all get on the trailer.
It soon became apparent that Juno’s spiritual-self wanted to get on the trailer, but his horse-self wasn’t sure he could do it. Juno had never loaded on the road before, never walked on a ramp (let alone one that dropped a few inches every time you stepped on it because the trailer was sloped on an angle), and the interior of the trailer was dark and dingy. Then, once he was on the trailer, the ramp was also the door! So it had to be lifted up off the ground and swung upwards to bolt at the top, above Juno’s head – all while I supported Juno to stay inside the trailer, and not bust out as the ramp was raised.
THAT is how difficult it was for Horse-Juno to get on that trailer. As the human in situations like this, you get to practice being a multi-dimensional being. You need to be firmly in the energetic/spirit realm to support their soul’s journey, whilst bringing your whole self, and every tool in your toolbox, in the physical realm to support the physical horse to accomplish something supremely challenging.
Throughout this process, Juno’s mum – Audelina – hung back and watched calmly and intently. Juno’s dad, Montaro, got on the trailer with me first, fairly easily, and ate hay in the far stall the entire time. Montaro just needed to go in and out a couple of times and then he was ready for me to close the door of his stall. Uncle Jax got on next into the middle stall – higher energy and a tad impatient (which is classic Jax) – but he somehow managed to stay calm during Juno’s trailer-loading process. And then Juno’s initiation experience was entirely up to him – with Cobra present for support, but also to say, “It’s okay if you can’t do it Juno, I’ll go instead.”
I can’t even explain how I helped Juno get on that trailer – he was haltered because we were on the side of the road, and he asked me to attach a rope, but I never pulled on the rope. It required every ounce of physical body language training I possessed, along with every smidge of energetic/ki/breathwork, combined together with exquisite timing as directed from the spiritual/energy realm, to support him in this objective.
At times it felt like I had to step into dominance to provide Juno with the hard walls to slam up against, as every instinct in his horse-self was screaming, “Run!” or “Get out!!” The genetics, instincts and visceral body of Juno’s horse-self simply could not withstand the insanity required to get on the trailer; yet his spiritual-self wanted to be on that trailer and head off with his Dad and Uncle for a life-expanding adventure.
I knew that I was the deal-breaker. If I could straddle both worlds – simultaneously – Juno would be able to get on that trailer and move forward on his chosen path. So it was not just a supreme challenge for Juno, but for me as well. One of those times when all I hear is Montaro saying, GET BIGGER.
Once Juno was in the trailer – highly agitated and pawing frantically, the sawdust got stuck in the hinges of the ramp. So I was in the trailer with him (definite ‘don’t try this at home’ moment) as I crouched down next to his pawing, stamping hooves, cleaned out the wedged-in shavings, and then as the driver raised the ramp up, I squeezed/jumped sideways out the remaining gap. As soon as I was out and the ramp/door bolted shut, Juno started kicking the crap out of the trailer. Mama continued to watch quietly from her spot about 100 feet away.
Aude too knew that she needed to spiritually/energetically support her son to get on the trailer, yet her physical body had to be far enough away to not trigger a “Mama!” moment that would then make it too difficult for Juno’s horse-self to get on that trailer and set out on his chosen adventure.’
As the trailer pulled away, I knew that Juno would transition to ‘manhood’ along the journey and would step out at the other end an entirely different being. Rites of passage tend to have that effect. The lads were on that trailer for a little over 48 hours and they all got out at the other end about 100 pounds lighter. All kinds of amazing things have happened since – both for Kesia and her herd, and of course for the lads themselves. But those stories are Kesia’s to tell – and with winter here, when the work load slows on the Nagata Family Farm, I hope she will finally have a minute to share some of those stories with you in the months ahead.
When will the lads return? I have no idea. I suppose it will be when I get land big enough to support their big energies and adventurous souls. I suppose it will be when their work with Kesia, and her herd, and that land, is finished.
Jax is working very strongly with a mountain on one side of their pasture there, which bears his name: Moonlight Mountain (Jax’s full name is Jax Moonlight). And he is also working closely with Kesia and her filly, Firefly. So many things can only be understood in hindsight, so in the meantime, we align with the highest good and we seek to rest in surrender and trust.
And of course, we also walk our own journey simultaneously. In the two weeks before the trailer was booked to arrive, the writings in my journal record the progression as Montaro gradually made it clear to me that it was not the wildies who would be going north to 500 acres of wild land.
The evening before the trailer was scheduled to arrive, I sat in a meditation circle with Aude, Juno, Jax, Montaro (and Zorra a bit off to the side). With my hand resting lightly under his mane, Juno said to me, “None of us wants to go. But this is the next piece that must happen.” I saw an image of pieces on a chessboard and until a key piece moves, none of the other pieces can move – all remain locked in place. We are all in service to the highest good. And sometimes good stuff is difficult.