Thursday, May 21, 2009


I had 20 minutes. It wasn't a free 20 minutes since I'd pay for it later. I was putting off a to-do list a mile long but I grabbed a cup of coffee, a book, a chair, and of course my camera and headed for the round pen.

The little horse stood as far away as he could, watching me. Waiting to see what I would make him do. I sat. I read. I drank my coffee. Occasionally I looked at him. I hollered hello to the old man, who twitched an ear at me and went back to his nap. The little horse flicked flies. He shifted his weight slightly. But mostly he watched. Eventually he put down his head and let out a big breath, but still he stood and watched.

I finished my chapter and stood up. I wanted so bad to go pet him. I debated with myself. I thought I should sit back down, but I didn't want to sit back down. I compromised, deciding I could approach but not touch. I walked over, ignoring him, and I looked at the other horses. Then I walked over and stood next to him. He watched me with open curiosity, not backing away. Curiosity won, and I felt his whiskers tickle my arm. I turned away and sat down. He let out a huge sigh, licked and chewed.

A bird landed on the fence and brought my attention to the peaceful view. The sky with a few clouds, the green, the quiet. I looked, took it all in, enjoyed the moment.

Two steps. The little horse moved his feet for the first time! Several more steps and he was with me. Sniff-sniffle-sniff. Arm, hand, hair, hat. Big grin. A few quiet moments of investigation, and then my 20 minutes was up.

With a little bit of nothing... Sometimes all you have to do is show up - just you, open and empty - and let the world fill in the details.

4 comments:

Kara said...

I really enjoyed this post.

Kate said...

I feel as if that is exactly what your little horse needs - just to hang out with people, not be pressured, until he figures out that things are OK! Congratulations to you for being such an excellent horseperson! You were actually working with him for that 20 minutes, as you sat quietly in your chair. (I see you're reading one of Mark Rashid's books - I have his new one on order.)

Andrea said...

Kara, thanks!

Kate, he does need this, but he needs other stuff too. I think you could sit with this horse for a year and not get very far. He seems to me to be a horse that would do things on his terms only. I do wish I had more than a month with him though. It would be nice not to have a time constraint, to just take it slow and easy. But he'll be fine either way.

Anonymous said...

I wish it was me sitting there with him....I really like this horse.....LAura