It has been a really interesting month. It has seemed like a roller coaster of emotions lately - up and down, back and forth...starting the farm has been such an amazing journey, but it of course isn't easy or stress free by any stretch of the imagination. Transitioning from having Delilah in training to being my responsiblity again full-time...now trying out the new mare for a possible trade...there has been so much to process. Add into that the fact that I have been fighting a brutal cold or flu bug for almost two weeks now, and it seems completely overwhelming. But all of the laying around and trying to recover has left me with a lot of time to think and process the past few months of craziness.
Perspectives are a funny thing. Everyone's view of the world is shaded by their own personal perspective. Our perspective is formed by our years of collective experiences, successes, and even disappointments. For example, I will use my own take on the world. I have always been an incredible optimist. I was always the happy, perky, bubbly girl, and you didn't really see me down in the dumps about anything. But you take that same girl, and channel her through a year of hell, in every sense of the word, and she is bound to come out the other side a little different. You see, 2010 for me started with the death of my husband's father. It is something I rarely talk about, but it was hands down the most traumatic experience I have ever been through. People experience death all the time, and it is all traumatic, but being there when it happens completely unexpectedly is a different experience. You will forever have flashbacks, every time an ambulance screams by, each time someone grabs their chest or is short of breath...it lives with you forever, and it colors your perspective on the world. After dad's death came the loss of our first pet, Trinity, after a pretty horrible accident in June. In July, my beloved grandmother took a fall getting out of bed in the middle of the night, and after a month of rehabilitation, she passed away. Then in August we lost my favorite uncle, the one who knew how to color life with my favorite thing - a glorious sense of humor. Then in October, I found out the horse that I purchased over the summer, my heart horse who I really came to love so quickly, had a bizarre congenital defect of the navicular bones, and would need an expensive surgery to be able to be sound. And then, at the end of October, I lost my golden retriever Skippy, who was my most beloved canine companion of all time. Truly, the nearest and dearest animal to my heart of all time. There were so many other things in between, but that is the collective picture of the year I went through that forever changed who I am, and who I will be in the future.
The biggest thing that I took out of that year is that life is short. Really, incredibly, and even traumatically short. There isn't time to waste living in misery. It's a lesson I am still peeling open, layer by layer, even as I write this post. Which has little to do with horses, but ironically it does have to do with riding through the fear, in a metaphorical way, I suppose. I lived in a place of intimidation for a really long time. I let so many things influence who I was, what I was afraid of, and the choices I made. But in the past few months, I have started to dig down and rediscover who I truly am. I'm not perfect. I have never claimed to be. I am as human as the next guy. I get mad, I retaliate, I try to justify myself...it is a part of being human. But at the end of the day, it isn't me.
I don't really know what the collective purpose of this post was for, other than to get out the massive amount of feelings that have been pouring out of me the last few days. Remorse and guilt for the ways I have acted at times, but also pride and peace at the way I have allowed myself to rise above at other times. A good friend of mine took a step to create a little more peace for herself too recently, and even though it didn't have the result that she had hoped for, I think it created a pathway for us to both move on with an open heart and a clear conscience. I used to go to a church that warned so strongly of the effects of living in bitterness and unforgiveness. They talked about the way it would poison you, from the inside out. The last few days of letting go have made that so clear to me. It's funny, the way things fall into place when you release it all. It is as if all the little puzzle pieces were floating around, waiting to fall into place, if only YOU will get out of the way. Well, I'm getting out of the way. I am letting go....