Monday, May 05, 2008

Sometimes, All I Need Is The Air That I Breathe ...

Saturday morning dawned with the crack of lightning and the roar of thunder. I could hear the monsoon assaulting the roof two stories up. "Ugh," I thought. "Is this another sign?"

You see, I've been cooking up the idea of getting a new horse for the past five weeks. And at every critical decision "juncture" (that's so old school GWBI) there has been some sort of opposition. On Friday night when I went out with the borrowed truck to pick up my trailer, the wiring wasn't a match and for a brief moment I thought I wasn't going to be able to travel to pick up the promised pony.

Thankfully there has been an angel or guiding force through each barrier, and the process taking the next steps toward my goal has really validated what I've felt stirring in my soul for the past year: I need a horse. I need to smell their smell and breathe their breath and touch their body. It's what anchors me. It's my content.

Many people do really amazing things in life that aren't necessarily grand or categorically "more important." They just represent the right thing at the right time. In the past 3 months I have become really aware of the gift of recognition and acknowledgment because I have received it from people who I never knew I was affecting. I was just doing what came to me naturally and what I felt was the right thing to do. That recognition has humbled me, and inspired me to continue on a path that I once doubted held the answers I was seeking.

And it has taken me to another level in my person, because it's opened up a part of me that has always been comfortable existing in pretense and not really saying the things that I feel. A little bit of affirmation goes a long, long way. I train my dog and horses via positive reinforcement methods (meaning I acknowledge and reward when they're doing something right), so why wouldn't I do that with people? As I keep spiraling up the age chart, I recognize what matters to me increasingly more is the blessing of authentic relationships.

And so that is my focus as I move forward in life.

Now, super-sappy Robby purge is over. Let's talk about West Farthing! My new horse is a precious soul. Injured in a horrible trailering accident - the sort that any horse owner has nightmares over - but much less than what could've been, he is incapable of performing at the very top level at which he was a routine player for most of his adult life. I have admired him from afar for many years. He would come into the arena and time would stand still for me. He was big. He was bay. And he had that presence that said, "I'm 100% available and willing to perform at the top end of my range."

Picking up his feet is a huge honor for me. Having him accost me for ginger snaps and peppermints is an added bonus. After an exciting drive through Saturday morning's storm to his home in Chatsworth, Georgia, with my friend Justin navigating, I sat on him for the first time. It was hysterical by industry standards - me who hasn't sat on a proper riding horse in nearly 2 years flailing about trying to jump a 2'6" chevron on a retired 4* horse - but it was magic at the same time. I fell in love, put him on the trailer, and the rest has been history. All 36 hours of it.

We weren't even to Chattanooga when the sky cleared and the afternoon became the most crystal clear perfect May day. I took it as a sign. Things are looking up!

I wasn't sure I could let a horse into my heart after I sold Rhodes. But sometimes all we have to do is meet the right person, or the right horse, and the shell of the person we created out of a defense mechanism is shattered and exposed for the hollow facade it actually is.

Leona sings it best, you know? "You cut me open and I keep bleeding love."

Welcome to my life, West Farthing. You've improved it already.


Debbie said...

My goodness! I had guessed you were getting a horse, but WHAT a horse. I've always loved watching him go, too. Lucky you and lucky him!

kchurch05 said...

Robby, that's so cool! What a gorgeous (and famous ;) horse - congratulations!!!!