Tuesday, August 27, 2013
On The Couch
This is what happened with Maggie, a magnificent Hanoverian mare with whom I've had the privilege of communicating on several occasions over the course of more than a year. Maggie is a brave and talented eventer, and it takes a lot to scare her. But of late, she'd been showing signs of stress when she was turned out in a large, lush pasture bordered by tall trees and woods. Rather than relaxing in this green paradise, Maggie had been anxiously pacing the fence, as if begging to come in. No one knew why. To our human minds, it made no sense.
When I connected with Maggie, I mentally put myself into her body to see what it felt like to be out there in the expansive grassy paddock, alone. I could immediately feel her sense of vulnerability: there was something unseen looming in the woods beyond the field and Maggie worried that it might spring forth to pounce on her. A hawk flew overhead: it, too, felt like a threatening presence in a wide open place where there was no place to hide.
I let Maggie know that I understood why she might feel worried, and gently suggested that she had the power to flee, to run if danger should appear. She said she might be happier in a smaller pen, closer to the barn, and I passed that on to her dear person, Polly.