Someone new came over to the barn today. She has some horse experience, but wants very much to have more. She chose words that resonated with me to describe that desire, words that pointed towards the mystical flow of communication between human and horse — to understand and to be understood. My heart skips a beat just writing this. But, I could go the whole rest of my life staying right here on this farm, privately cultivating and basking in the relationships I have with the horses and that would be enough. I am protective of the thing that we have, hyper protective. I have radar about the energy of people and their attitudes towards animals, horses in particular. Know that there are people I would let into my house and not into my barn and that I don’t care what that makes you think of me.
But I liked her energy and earnest clarity. I liked her openness and willingness to listen and learn. So, I said yes, come on over and we shall see and I introduced her to Beamer. She treated him like a horse. He was polite enough about that and we kept going. I talked to her about what her hand was communicating, clutched up high on the rope near his halter. I talked about what her body was saying, just standing still. I talked to her about what Beamer’s sloth-like movement meant in response to her requests. Then I took Beamer in hand and Beamer showed her what he was like when he was connected with me.
I saw the lightbulb. I saw her search and change herself and, I swear, I saw Beamer smiling and then pretty much take it from there. So now here is my more honest truth: I am happy with what I have in my own little bubble, but there is a joy that comes from sharing it, no, giving it to someone else in a way that means it becomes theirs. The kindness is not in the giving. The kindness is in the open vessel that provides a space for it to flow. What a kindness I was given today.