Red Landscape by Sue Steiner
This time of year in NE Ohio can be bitter cold. Today is no exception. To care for the horses properly in this weather requires a good set up, work and lots of calories (for the horses)! I am not one to be real gung ho on lots of electrical gadgets in the barn for fear of a barn fire. I do make sure the horses have plenty of water and hay. The process of digesting hay produces heat for the horses and helps them to maintain their body heat. If fed properly and allowed to grow a winter coat my horses rarely shiver– even in sub zero weather. Part of good barn management and animal care is being observant to how the animals are coping with the challenges of the season. This is what brings my thoughts around to the idea of ‘living in the moment’.
I am not sure but suspect a horse can only know what they are experiencing in the moment. I know they have great memories but I don’t know if they can project ahead and think… okay… if I can just get thru January and February things will start to look up for me soon. My guess is they just accept where they are at the moment and live in that moment.
Horses can ‘anticipate’ events that are routines. Show horses do this in the riding ring because they are often asked to do the same task in the same order over and over so they begin to anticipate the next command. Thats really different though then knowing it will not always be what it is now. They soak up the sun when the sun appears. They buckle down and put their backs to the wind when the cold front blows in. They tolerate the flies in Aug. and kick up their heels on the brisk mornings in Oct. Things are either good, bad or tolerable. Things are just what they are.
I wonder what lessons can be learned for people in just living in the moment and accepting what is before us? Would the worry only appear when there is actual cause for worry? Rather than worrying about what we expect will happen? I wonder too if a knowledge would not build that you will deal with the situation before you as best you can? You prepare by just living that moment strung on to the next moment strung on to the next and so on knowing you will adapt and do the best you can with what you have?
Next time you are around your animals soak up the honesty in which they respond to the moment. I find this one of the most endearing aspects of animals.
One of my favorite verses is “Be still and know that I am God’. I personally find it hard to be still within myself but know that the contact with nature and animals can be quite meditative and helps to give a model on how to ‘be’. I will deal with what is before me because i am only kidding myself if I think I can predict what will happen in my future. I will not live in fear and worry until I have evidence of danger in front of me.
I have been inspired by a young man named Kory Wiita who suffered a spinal cord injury on Oct. 30th during a highschool football game. I’ve been following his family’s journey as they write about it on a CaringBridge web site. He is an amazing kid. My heart and prayers have been with him. In an instant his life was drastically changed but to see him move forward with courage and grace is truly inspiring. He has inspired me to live the life that is before me as fully as I can. My wish is for you to do the same in yours.
equine and animal artist