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Back on the Horse

My initial vacation of going to a family wedding in Texas and then visiting my parents in Kentucky for a little less than a month has turned into a 10 month quarantine turned permanent move for myself and my daughter. I did not see this coming as I embraced the Kentucky lifestyle and signed up for an INTUITIVE HORSE™ Level 1 Class in February 2020.

Through social distancing, wearing masks, and private lessons, I have been attending horse lessons with Dr. Thecla Helmbrecht Howard (Dr. T) and my horse Derby a 16 ½ hand Tennessee walker. Derby is the biggest horse on the ranch and is considered the “Shaman” of the herd. Unbeknownst at the time, Derby, Dr. T, and myself were brought together by a little bit of luck and a whole lot of fate.

The lessons and epiphanies learned through these horse lessons are life changing.

Lesson 1: Trust Your Gut, but ALWAYS Trust Your Horse

When riding Derby, he can read my mind and body cues. He is assessing every move I make, and like other souls close to me, can get annoyed and frustrated when I’m off task. When I find my mind wondering, he will wander into the trees allowing a branch to hit me – get back to reality, Shelly!

Recently while riding, I was overwhelmed, and my mind was out of control. My mind went back to every event throughout the entire summer that seemed out of control, my emotions were sporadic, this COVID experience shifted my perspective and I lost all sense of reality. I was spiraling. My boundaries were nonexistent and I didn’t trust my gut instincts that something had to change. Then,


I fell off my horse. My forehead and right shoulder slammed into Mother Earth in such a physical and visceral slap that it screamed, “get your head out of the clouds and pay attention! You are afraid, and you keep shoving down the pain.” And I did wake up. It took a while, but I am back on the horse both literally and figuratively.

Lesson 2: Don’t Let Fear Rule Your Day

Fear… False evidence appearing real has been hovering over me, and perhaps some of you. Realizing the more I dwell on fear, the more real it becomes. During this last year, I have asked myself, who and what in me is afraid? Once I could answer that question, I would speak up for that part in me that needed courage. Summoning courage has allowed me to stand strong as I come to the edge of Fear. Summon what and who you need… the winds and spirit are always listening.

I look forward to our Wednesday’s with Dr. T at Kamp Kessa and more lessons and epiphanies to come.

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