When I think back to a couple of years ago, an overpowering realisation hits me and often reduces me to feel rather tearful. I felt trapped and so very unhappy back then because I was walking the wrong path.
Like a friend warmly waving in the distance, my ponies have always been there and they’ve taught me in numerous ways, throughout our ten year journey together that my path is with them. It always has been. My confidence, my personality, my courage has all blossomed because of them. Which is why I’ve been inspired to share this wonderful experience with children. . . with Meadow Ponies, my new venture! My hope is to help children learn and grow with the gentle assistance of my incredibly special herd of ponies in our beloved Bridie’s Meadow.
I know how it feels to be shy and fearful of the big wide world. Putting yourself first seems painful and breaking free to do what you love feels frightening, because there’s always someone who frowns and shakes their head, because you’re no longer serving them.
If I can help little ones see their worth and share what ponies have brought to me, then what a special thing that would be . . . there’s still the child in all of us who longs to be heard and cherished for simply being themselves.
How fortunate that ponies never judge . . . they just listen. There is such a lot of power in that, a strong healing power, and I truly cannot wait to share it . . .
‘ They give us wings so we may fly, to ride a horse is to ride the sky’ . . .
We all have a quiet dream that sometimes gets tucked away for while.
Maybe confidence prevents us from believing we could make it happen. Maybe it’s fear that we’re not capable enough. Maybe we are simply afraid to have a go, or even just unsure of how to make it come to light. Do we have the skills. The tools. Do we deserve to really give our dreams our full energy and devotion . . .
Staying a float and supporting ourselves can all too often take over when we venture out into the world. I’ve always seen truth in the succinct quote ‘ If you don’t build your own dreams, someone else will hire you to hep build theirs ‘ This happens so easily and before long we can be walking a path that we’re not entirely sure is right for us. . . . .
Helping others build their dreams is a wonderful thing of course, we all need support and team work. But it is only worthwhile if you’re happy to do it. If you’re working for others because you want to and are freely giving yourself to their cause.
If we are happy to put our dreams to one side, or even change our minds and focus on a new dream, then that’s wonderful . . . but if we feel like we’re losing our sparkle, losing that passion to do what we love, and feeling sad at letting that dream slip away, then we simply must address it and take action.
Horses have always been my safe place. My happy place. My home outside of home. I’ve always planned to have them closely linked into my leisure and working life. I remain grateful each day that they’re part of my little world.
Confidence can leave you fearful of pursuing what you love . . . worrying about what others think can also plummet your courage but, when a loved one gives you a pat on the back and says ‘ go and do it ‘ all manner of doubt fades steadily away . . .
My words and musings on horses and mindfulness have not flowed as regularly as I had hoped in recent months. But, a new dream of mine is busying itself and preparing to come to life, so my blog has kindly taken a quiet step back until it’s pages can regularly be filled again – and they will – because my new dream is actually, wonderfully bringing itself into the meadow and into my day to day time with my ponies as I type. Mindfulness with Horses is well and truly coming to fully fledged life . . . I’m living what I write as well as writing what I live.
When what you love comes back to you, you have to trust it . . . right?
Something about the birdsong in the meadow, when the traffic has steadied, the tractors have finished their roaring past and the faint sound of their busy work can only be noticed from a distance . . . something then, about that beautiful bird song is so calming, so humbling and so very therapeutic, it’s as if they they’re singing just for you and you’re the only one that can hear it.
Do you ever have those moments where things get a little bit overwhelming? You’re not really sure why? But the feelings build and build until you’re not quite sure what to do with yourself! I experienced a moment just like this recently. It’s a regular occurrence as an individual who sees the world through worried eyes. But, in the midst of my angst something remarkable happened. I was alerted to a tiny sound upon the ground, and there, quietly in his own state of worry, was a tiny, precious lost duckling who had wandered too far from his mother.
I know the meadow inside out. Each corner of the bank which drops down to the river is where the ducks nestle and start their families. This tiny, lost little creature needed some help, so, I very gently scooped him up in my hands, carefully carried him to the river bank where just as hoped, mother duck was waiting and quacking with her two other children! Her voice calmed at the sight of her infant and I placed him down beside her. Happily the four of them hobbled back into the river and swam over the ripples and floated down stream rekindled once more. What a beautiful sight on an anxious morning. A silver lining and a gentle reminder that kindness is a healer to each other and to ourselves . . .
It’s okay to remember. It’s okay to be sad. It’s okay to hang on to all that we had.
It’s okay to smile, move forwards and be brave, because here in my heart is where you’ll always be . . .
~ Bridie ~
1991 – April 2016
‘ Losing a beloved animal is probably a different sort of grief to losing a beloved person. But . . . what if that animal was ‘like a person’ to you . . . anything loved so much when lost will cause a crushing sound to the heart . . . but life. . . funny, muddled up, curious, joyful, sad, mysterious life always finds a way to scoop you up, dust you off, and say . . .
Blue bell wandering, woodland walks, sunlit skin, hoof beats upon the grassy tracks, spring breeze, pastel blossom in the air, golden fields, late evening musings, daisy faces, cow parsley bunches, riding for miles into the sunshine and beyond, towards the sparkling meadows of yellow, blue and green.
A horse life of evening rides into the sunset truly is the
Our meadow is a little piece of paradise in the spring and summer. The ponies fondly call it home and so do we.
You will leave feeling more restored than when you first arrived, despite the probability of a tired body from pony care combined with the devotion to rural pursuits!
It’s a little like farming and gardening once the meadow transforms from bare to green. Care must be taken to tend to it’s seasonal needs, harrowing the grassland, preparing spring fencing, tidying and refreshing from the now drying mud. It’s a real lifestyle choice running a meadow . . . but oh how I love it so.
For a very long time, I hoped for such a place to keep my treasured ponies. It came along just at the right time and for the first time in my life, I leapt into confident action to stand a chance of making it mine.
It’s funny how a place can be become such a part of your life and identity. Spring is the time we bring our meadow back to life. Hanging baskets, plant pots, bunting. It may not be a ‘secret’ garden, but it’s our little slice of magic . . . and it just so happens to have four beautiful horses in it to make it perfectly complete.
“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?” “It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…”