Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Green thumbing and horse whispering

I always knew the horses and the gardens were my therapy. I always forget how therapeutic both are until I truly need them again, or I go for too long a stretch between either. I went riding and instantly felt more at peace with everything. I dug new flower beds and planted flowers and felt the stress fall from my body in great, ugly lumps. Planting things, making things grow, even the smallest marigold, gives me the feeling that yes, I can still nurture and grow something and I'm not a complete failure in all things I touch. Watching a tiny seed turn into a beautiful plant because I put it in the dirt and watered it is immensely satisfying on all kinds of deep, subconscious levels.

I took Chief out for a short bareback hack last night, and it was SO nice. Just him and me, toddling along as that old Appy is wont to do. He doesn't go fast, and that's okay when I just want to get away and relax. The gentle back and forth, side to side motion of his body beneath mine is more relaxing than any high-priced massage could ever be. The smell of his horsiness and the sound of his hooves brushing through the grass are worth more to me than any diamond or sports car can ever be worth. The horse hairs stuck to my pants and shirt and in my hair and eyes are welcome additions to my hopelessly out-of-style wardrobe. The scent of his musky, sweat-sharp odor clings to me and it's the priciest, most worthwhile perfume I could ever buy.

He reminds me to be humble in a way only horses can do. He reminds me kindness, quietness, understanding and gentleness should be first on everyone's list of "must dos" the moment they wake in the morning.

Despite the whirling world around me, my thumb is still green and I can still whisper to my horses. Everything else can just sit by the side and watch for awhile, because when I'm getting rich, dark earth beneath my fingernails or feeling my horse beneath my hands, my nose and my thighs, all is right in the world, at least for a little while.


Lisa said...

I have always wanted to learn to ride horses. And yes, gardening for me too is therapy.

Lovely post!

Bummed that you didn't make it on Saturday? How is your daughter? Hope she's getting better. We plan to get together again at some point. Will keep you posted.

Jenn said...

Thank you! Yes, I am VERY bummed I didn't get to meet you guys Saturday...the emergency room was not the way I had planned to spend my afternoon, that's for sure! Definitely keep me posted on the next get together, I'd love to be there, barring any more ER visits.

She is much better, thank you! She still had a sore head/headache Sunday, but thankfully the vomiting and the blurred vision were gone.

I was kind of hoping it had knocked some sense in to her, but that didn't seem to work.

Nancy said...

I feel the same way about gardening, and secretly, I find it a drag when the girls want to 'help'.

Glad to hear your daughter is on the mend!