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To Think I Know

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There are challenges that face us every day, that at times drive us close to insanity. Yet I think one of the biggest challenges is letting go of what we think is right for other people and focus on what is right in our own life.

I got to thinking of a few years ago how I thought I had a lot of things figured out in my life. I thought I needed to help all of those around me, almost render them helpless, giving advise on what I thought might help them achieve goals,  then offering advice of how I would do it different…

Then wonder why  I felt no one respected my ideas, when they were as plain as day to me. If they would only do it as I said…

Sound familiar?

Have you ever looked at a picture, and judged it by the shot. We have a tendancy to look at that picure and create a story.

Sometimes we can look at a snap shot of an issue and make a snap opinion,  just from knowing what we know… but what do we really know?  Are we judging from personal experience, or something that we heard? Do we have any idea how many opinions out there that think that they are right?

Let’s take public speaking for example… how many can walk on stage and give an ten minute impromptu speach?  Yes or no?  Or one of the hot topics in the horse world… to shoe or not to shoe that is the question. Who is right and why?  I personally love a barefooted horse… but I have also rode in some very tough country, that had my horses not had shoes on, thier feet would of been sanded down to raw stubs.

I am not going to get into which way is right or wrong, my point is, we all have opinions on what we think is right by the experience we have had, that has created the law within our own mind, we now believe to be the truth, because we got through it. Ten different people have ten different truths and each person wants to express why their truth is the right one.

An example is I heard a friend had lied to another friend about feeding a horse…  oh let’s say Maj and Bertha, so Maj feeds her horse every day at the same time, usually Bertha does too. But lately Bertha is not there to feed her horse and Maj notices for a week that Berthas horse has no feed when she is there.  She even stayed an hour later to see if Birtha would show. Maj with boubt in her mind asks Bertha if she is feeding her horse. Bertha says “every day”. Maj doesnt believe it and thinks Bertha is lieing, she has proof… And tells me and a couple of friends what she noticed, pretty quick, things get out of hand and doubt about Bertha has escalated.  Maj mind goes in overdrive on how unfair Bertha is to her horse.  What would be your reaction the next time you see Bertha?

Well I see Bertha, I casually ask her how things are are going. “Good” Bertha said she got moved to temperary swing shift and feeds her horse before she goes home at midnight. She rides and feeds again just before work which is four hours earlier than she used to.. She actually is relieved for swing because she gets to ride in the cool of the morning .

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What I have noticed is it seems that we get so busy jumping to conclusions and judging other people for things we think are right. Things we “think” we know,  not nessisarily  for the right reasons. Do you notice you keep yourself busy with other people, friends, because your own life is a mess and you don’t want to clean it up. You know…, kind of like it is a lot more fun spending other people’s money.

I think we have been taught to help others in need, but when we do so without facing the fact that we can assist but not do for them and render them helpless. I’ll ride that horse for you… basically you are saying… you can do it better, or, they can’t do it at all. I find it seems easier to help clean a friend’s house than clean up my own mess. Running from what I know I should do and focusing on others weakness or dilemma take my focus off myself and puts off what needs done in other areas

Finding ourself in situations of “did I ask for your opinion?”.

As we become more knowledgable about something we have a tendancy to want to share that knowledge even though we just learned it.

When you look at a judgement, call for what it really is.  if we were to be honest, it would be to make sure to fulfill our own obligations to ourself and support those around us without judgement or enabling them. It can make a friendship stand true and solid. Or   respect they have the strength to overcome the same obsticals that you have. If there are questions we can support and answer in a respectful way.

I think it is hard to stand back and watch someone stuggle to make a change in their life… I feel there is a fine line of facing challenges with support , or having someone do it for you because it is easier and it gets the job done.. I counted on my sister for her decisions and had her opinion make up my mind, then told her it didn’ work out to my expectation. Hmmm wonder why, but wait I wasn’ done with her, I then preceeded to tell her why it didn’ work.

What?! I told her, that I looked it up on line and…

Hmmm! Two months later we laugh about it!

Usually I get my best information from those who are more reserved, ones that make me search for the answer. For when I find it, I know I have truly found what works for me.

I weigh out my options and listen to what fits me without judgement on the person who gave me infornation. Well I try… Sometimes I only hear what I want to or what I understand, then make that my new knowledg with different insight. To make that knowledg become habit… well that’ another story.

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Beyond the Moments of Living

A thought that crossed my mind,  that thought I would put on paper and share. Life is living, beyond the reaches of time. We do it everyday. Each day for us is a new beginning of life and our choice among the moments of living.

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Death on the other hand is an instant, a moment without breath or living. Death does not exist without life. Value, memories,  change or appreciation is not fully understood without death. That moment, that tweak of an instant, that release of living, of  not being in control of that instant is humbling.

The question I have in my mind, is not fear based or of tragedy or bliss, but the question I have… is death permanent? Or is it a transcending moment into the unknown energy beyond God as we know in the bible, written in interpretation of assumption? Beyond the belief of sin? Beyond weakness and decisions of right and wrong?

That final delema, that final question, that only one species in the world, seeks to answer through the ages of time and knowledge of ancient writing, the interpretation of that knowledge,  has brought question, frustration, death, war, and confusion and enlightenment. It has divided the seekers and believers, divided the word from the truth. And can be studied and judged an entire lifetime, it seems like our species wants to  demand someone is right and someone is wrong.

So with this thought for the day, as change, uncertainty,  and confusion that has fallen upon us, I have one absolute that rings true for me in my mind, that I will hold true in my heart. With the belief of God, love,  and a prayer of understand the creators definition of the above.

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Death cannot exist without life. Life is beyond time, for it does not count seconds, minutes or years, it exists to exist for all the moments that exist. Life is emotion of all living things to feel and experience.  Death is the immediate silence after life and the living we create. And death awaites, it does not descrimate by color of skin, or fur or scale, not by belief of religion or species of blood or plant of the earth. Death is  the evidence that life is living.

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Now back to my horses and the life I live. Enjoy the little things

http://www.akmossbooks.com

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Moonshadow

I had a dream, that for a few days people gathered together and enjoyed one sunset, and at that moment of darkness, a ring of light appeared. Without being  prompted, or without hesitation everyone cheered!.20170821_102241

As we stared at that ring of light with our cellphones, smart phones and cameras all clicking images of one moment, one shadow, one vision. While shy Venus show her face in the darkness of the moons shadow. In the few moments of darkness on the morning, across the US, we were happy., we were together, all differences aside, we were united in ah and wonder.

Within our little rural community , people gathered together, enjoyed eachs diversities  from across the globe. It did not matter education, job or race. What a beautiful moment it was. For those that visited our little corner of the world for those few days. I have to say thank you for sharing that moment with us.

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When it was done and the light came back on us, slowly drifting reality into our midst, we all knew we were going to return to our daily lives, of schedules, appointments and hurried honeydos.

We stay for a few more minutes, as we watch a new dawn together. When shadows dims and heat returns, reality sets in. We begin to claim our space once again. Our place on the road, a parking spot our place in line at the grocery store, yet after we are gone realizing it never was ours to claim. Just a moment, a hesitation, maybe a frustration  that things didn’t work out to our own expectation,  but things worked out all the same.

As I see the images shared across the internet, and I see the same image over and over again I will think of that quiet moment before and the cheers of strangers, unprompted,sounding together as one voice.

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I will choose to hold on to that dream as if it were real. Thinking and, hoping others had the same dream. That little spark of light as a new dawn reaches past the moonshadow and sheds a little beacon of warmth and new light.

http://www.akmossbooks.com

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On the Off Side of the Fence

In my horse world I have never really been a competitive person. I have challenged myself and my horse to partisipate in certain adventures but have never fully grasped the winning -loosing thing.

I know I have blogged about this before, but I guess in the search of my strength and weaknesses I am faced with more about how I see winning and how others see it. Or maybe it is just getting words on paper about fear and facing it beyond stepping up and stepping on.

I have felt most all of my life like I have been on the off side of the fence. I guess, as they always say… “The Grass is always Greener”… I don’t think I really got that until I realized how odd I always felt in a crowd, always wishing I was something beyond who I was. . Then on top of that, what I felt like when I competed in an event and actually won. Feeling all eyes on me, all of the congratulations and job well dones.. All I could see was all of the flaws I had done and how I felt in the heat of competion.  Sick to my stomach, and insignificant.  To hold an award for a moment for a picture and a feeling of a job well done, yet knowing in my heart , others there are just as good, if not better than myself. 20170812_061727

When for a brif moment the sun begins to rise in my clouded mind. I am stronger than what I was when I began. I have defined my priorities and shuffled through my imagination to grasp innerstrenth and challenge my doubtful mind. For those moments in the winners circle is not about being better than some one else. It is attempting to be better than I  used to be, to the point of recognition.

To stand and be acknowledged for achievements of like minded people. Beyond having to win or needing a partisipation award. But it is more of self value and motovation of growth.

I know there are some extemists out there, qho winning is everything. And others who say,”hey, I showed up, I need a ribbon, or award.”

But for me, it is about personal growth and inner strength. About achievement beyond, showing up. It is about being the best I can be and allowing myself to grow with the challenges of competion.  The heart break, the trials and the rewards on the off side of the fence. FB_IMG_1486048004288

Questioning my strengths and weakness, not by judgement but by curiosity. By questioning my self to the challenges I set for myself. And finding those who can help me on my journey, along the way.

I don’t expect to change the world or even talk you into believing as I do, but as I watch children struggle with being accepted, or feeling like a looser for not placing I felt I would put a few words on paper about my challenges… nothing more. Nothing less, just words from a gal on the off side of the fence.

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http://www.akmossbooks.com

 

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In reading these words, I have sat and waited in waiting wooms, emergency roons, waiting wondering, praying and trying to understand. I think this blog is beautiful, in self awareness and caregivers. Thank you for the blog.

Ocean Views and Book Reviews

HOW DO YOU DEFINE YOURSELF? WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE DEFINITION YOU THOUGHT WAS RIGHT CHANGES? DOES FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN INVENT WHO YOU ARE? DOES WHO YOU ARE DEPEND ON WHO YOU ARE AROUND? WHAT DO YOU DEFINE AS THAT WHICH IS YOU? THE UNIQUE YOU. THE HAPPY YOU. THE REAL YOU? CRAZY QUESTIONS THAT POSE A LONGER LINE OF THINKING, LIKE WHO ARE YOU REALLY?

rotating-questionmarkWHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL I WANTED TO BE THE FIRST FEMALE THUNDERBIRD PILOT FOR THE AIR FORCE. I SUPPOSE THAT THIS SUPPORTED I SEE MYSELF AS STRONG AND UNIQUE. THAT I WOULD HAVE THE ABILITY TO FIGHT AND DEMAND THAT AS A FEMALE I COULD FLY A FIGHTER JET JUST LIKE A MAN COULD.

fly-among-soloIN REALITY, I WAS TOLD THAT WOULD NEVER HAPPEN, THE NAVY CAME A COURTIN, AND I DECIDED THAT MAYBE MILITARY WOULD NOT BE THE WAY I WANTED TO…

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Defining Yourself

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The Value of Winning

What does it mean to win? Has society placed winning as the value or worth of the competitor?  Is that the sole intention of winning? 20170723_075144I have never really been a competitive person. I hated the idea of one person better than the other, and avoided at pretty much all costs. Was it because I didnt want to fail? I didn’t want to be embarrased or was it that I was scared of my own success?

Just these last few years have I began to look at competion as an act of personal growth. Although I have found not all people feel the same way. I am suprised of the vast array of emotions that some people go through with the thought that they might not bring home the winning blue ribbon.  Last weekend I had an opportunity to participate in a small horse show. I did not have time to prepare or even a chance to give my horse a bath, let alone clean up his bridle path and simple things like that.  I was anticipating a few classes and a grand experience  what ever the outcome.  By the time we got there I ended up signing up for 20 classes, so far out of my comfort zone I could only laugh at what my colt was going to think of me by the end of the day.

As the day wore on class after class I found my little red horse gave me all he had, improving with every class, along with my own feeling of accomplishment.  About the 15th class I felt him falter, hesitate. At first I thought to push him through, only five classes left. I didn’t want to be a quitter.  But that thought past through my mind and disipated in an instant when I asked him one more time for a lope and he gave it to me, with ears up and forward motion. I knew this would be his last tough class of the day as he gave me a beautiful stop. I was filled with pride and emotion as we walked back in line and waited for the ribbons to be handed out. As we stood and waited, a young girl sitting next to me, anticipating 1st, but was upset her horse didn’t pick up the correct lead. She was really upset and found fault in the everything around her. How important is winning? I found out later how her coach reprimanded her for being lazy and not paying attention. Later another young girl was hoping that in trail class they would have things she was good at, such as the mail box…

I replied back at her, “I don’t want things I am good at.”

“Why? It makes it easy to win.”

“I’m not here to win,” I replied, “I am here to challenge myself and my little red horse.”

The little girl was quiet while we waited. Then as we started out of the arena, she said something that will forever be remembered. “Thank you for talking to me.”

“Well, your welcome, my name is Kathy.”

She gave me her name as we visited as we continued out of the arena. Later that day I heard her say to another young girl.

“That woman right there, she doesn’t want to win.  But she sure is winning alot.”

It amazes me the challenges we face and how we evaluate winning and challenging ourself to be better than who we were before  we got there. I have challenged myself several times by entering something. Such as Cowboy Idol cowboy poetry competion and horses shows or what ever, I feel blessed to have competitors who taught me more than by the competion itself.

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On this paticular competion I  was taking a young horse, working at becoming a team and asking him to do things I had never asked of him before, to see if he would follow through. I will say this in facing these challenges.  In English Pleasure, in a saddle I am not familiar with, I did mention English didn’t i; my colt spooked at a paper in the wind. As he jumped to the side at a canter,  I felt myself beginning to fall, Hitch broke stride and brought himself back under me, then picked up his lead and continued as if nothing happened. Ears up and focusing on what’s in front of him. It was a secret he would of kept, had I not mentioned it. If this is not winning I don’t know what is. The ribbons on the wall are a reminder of the adventure, but no one will know the feeling inside, of the challenges faced and achievements within.2017-07-23 13.21.16I will be forever greatful for the challenges we faced together and the sense of achievement that little red horse gave me. Not by ribbons or trophies but by memories and fun we had that day.

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Through Equine Eyes

What is the magic in the horse, that draws the human spirit? The grace? The power? When you look into the eyes of the horse what do you see? No, I mean what do you really see.
I see a mirror of ones self. If I were honest and really stop, look and listen, I would see my strength, and my beauty, I see my courage and my fear. I heard it said, the horse is the mirror of the soul.
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Ray Hunt, a significant influence on natural horsemanship once said, “You are not working the horse you are working yourself.”

From the hundreds of horses that I have worked I feel these words carry a depth that words alone can not be understood until you have felt the impact of the horses knowledge. In the silence of a glance or a tug on the lead to give you guidence on your journey. You have the ability to listen to the horse or redirect the horse to what you thought you wanted, but don’t know how to ask.

Time and time again I have witnessed the correction of what I thought I wanted and what the horse has offered me. And I stand humbled at the difference. From working mustangs who only understand equine language to working the more domesticated horse who have been peopled to death, stalled, and waiting silently, living within four walls hour after hour, waiting to be let out and able to move freely as the athlete they are supposed to be. Some are scared of their own shadow evident when riding.  Other horses critiqued in a discipline of their persons choice to be worked and reworked to perfection of controlled mobility, on a human perspective.

Some horses enjoy the challenge of people working on their discipline others are looking for another outlet, another area of expertise that they can excel at.20170322_141246_231852

The horse waits and adjusts to its surrounding the best it can, some looking forward to blanket and stall, others want freedon to be out and about. We expect a horse to adjust to any situation on our terms, but most of us know there is a limit to their silent sanity.

They try to express their understanding the only way they know how.  Sometimes their efforts is not good enough and we push them beyond their understanding or trust. A lot of times it does not turn out so well.

I was with some buckaroos one morning out at cow camp several years ago, a man had come to ride with us. His horse never being out of an arena before. As he got his horse saddled, the horse spooked and jumped to the side, almost stepping on the man. With that the man proceeded to kick the horse in the belly several times to make him respect his space… the horse became even more nervous of his surroundings then the man began to jerk on the horses head.

An old cowboy watched for a few moments, then stated, “Well that feller is trying to work beyond his knowledge.”

Then turned his horse to begin his day.

I have thought of that instance many times. And realized,  when I don’t know what to do in a situation with my horse, I fall back to old habits taught to me. Some not in the best intrest of the horse. From there I have a choice, keep doing what I have done, or I take a moment pause, think of his reaction to my action and move from there.

If you think for a moment and question this sinario, if a man that speaks a different language walks up to you, puts a rope around your neck and started dragging you along to an unknown destination, would you be inclined to resist? Would your instincts kick in? What if he kicked you in the belly because you jumped, what is your reaction? If this paticular man knew a little bit of your language and offered communication between you and himself what reaction would you offer? If he allowed you to be scared, uncertain, hurt… would trust develop?  Every horse is different, just like every person is different. We have learned what walls to build in life to get by, just like the horse. The damage or abuse we can’t let go of, holds us in a pattern that controls our fear or anxiety that we have learned how to cover up. But we still continue to look for rules, bounderies and leadership along with having some kind of freedom.

As society changes some perceptions of horses  communication, it brings awareness that horses are asking the same things. If they can’t understand or have the courage to try then they take it upon their self to try and find release, what ever the effort. But if we look deeper, the question comes to mind, is that not what we do? Right or wrong, don’t we try to get control, hide behind our fears or flat out take charge?

Why do we want a horse? What draws us to them? Is it that they  healing our life? Do they give us the feeling of being understood, heard? Or it might be trying to get control of life in one way or another. Could it be the challenge of competion, using the horse as our legs? What ever we are searching for through the decades of living and the universal appeal of the horse, they stand silent and wait for our requests. Blindly stepping in the trailer with no idea of where they are headed. To chase a cow, long jog through the desert, or run a barrel pattern, to jumping or dressage. They face and react to our planned days with effort and resistance.

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This is a broad area to talk about and some people might think I have gone off the deep end, but I believe, people and horses have to be multi lingeral to share their existence with each other. To some it is as obvious as breathing and others it is “I have to control this animal.” People can talk of their knowledge and accomplishments,  they can express judgement and compassion. They can feed, not feed, beat, punish or discipline horses in untold techniques behind the scenes to make them shine in the light. The magic is really the reality and truth of our action and reaction that makes a horse truly communicate with us. One thing for sure as you work through the issues and soften the communication between what you want from the horse standing next to you,  it will shine in the silence, for the truth lies within equine eyes.

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