Saturday, January 18, 2014

end of the week

I've gotten off my evening posting schedule so I'm writing this one Saturday morning. Yesterday was lovely and warm but gusty with wind. I put Keil Bay in a sunny stall to eat his feed tub, gave him some hay, and spent quite a long time brushing the newly-appointed mud trinkets out of his winter coat.

He was happy to be there with me; it was one of those times when we were perfectly in sync - we moved together to the back door of the stall so I could brush his face and let the dust blow away, so I could clean the brush in the wind while he checked on his herd in the front field. 

I had in mind to ride at the end of this but it was so lovely being there together I didn't want to end the time. I brushed out his tail, checked him from head to hoof for ticks (unbelievably he had one the day before!) and then, after nearly an hour, I opened the stall door to go get something and the Big Bay said "I'm ready to go out" and I didn't listen and he tried to push past me.


He's too big and too broad to put that in his repertoire of okay behaviors so I got his halter and lead rope and we went into the arena to do some ground work. He was contrite and very willing and we worked for about 20 minutes.

I don't know what happened - as we worked together I got very sad, imagining a day when he won't be here, and tears started falling from my eyes as we walked. I stopped and told him what I was thinking about and he lowered his head so his eye was right next to mine. It's okay, he said, let's keep going. I'm here right now.

And so we did.

At the end, daughter came out to the barn and I had the idea to video Keil Bay's hoof landings a la Rockley Farm, so she used the iPhone down at ground level to get him at the walk and then at the trot. In one video the donkeys come in and do a huge spook in the background as Keil starts his trot so there's good footage of donkey movement on the fly too!  I haven't put it into iMovie yet to get the slow motion view but so far it looks good.

This morning someone posted this on my Facebook feed and I wanted to share it here since it speaks to so much of what I think a lot of us experience with our horses. I'm not sure who wrote it so can't attribute, but here it is:

"Recent studies conducted by the Institute of HeartMath provide a clue to explain the bidirectional "healing" that happens when we are near horses. According to researchers, the heart has a larger electromagnetic field and higher level of intelligence than the brain: A magnetometer can measure the heart's energy field radiating up to 8 to 10 feet around the human body. While this is certainly significant it is perhaps more impressive that the electromagnetic field projected by the horse's heart is five times larger than the human one (imagine a sphere-shaped field that completely surrounds you). The horse's electromagnetic field is also stronger than ours and can actually directly influence our own heart rhythm! Horses are also likely to have what science has identified as a "coherent" heart rhythm (heart rate pattern) which explains why we may "feel better" when we are around them. . . .studies have found that a coherent heart pattern or HRV is a robust measure of well-being and consistent with emotional states of calm and joy--that is, we exhibit such patterns when we feel positive emotions. A coherent heart pattern is indicative of a system that can recover and adjust to stressful situations very efficiently. Often times, we only need to be in a horses presence to feel a sense of wellness and peace. In fact, research shows that people experience many physiological benefits while interacting with horses, including lowered blood pressure and heart rate, increased levels of beta-endorphins (neurotransmitters that serve as pain surppressors), decreased stress levels, reduced feelings of anger, hostility, tension and anxiety, improved social functioning; and increased feelings of empowerment, trust, patience and self-efficacy."


Grey Horse Matters said...

Hope you get the movie to work I'd love to see it.

Really interesting what your Facebook contributor left. I believe it. I always feel much better when surrounded by the horses.

billie said...

A, I will try to post it if I can get the slow motion thing to work. It's not on concrete as they do on Rockley Farm, but I figure this at least gives me a glimpse. We have concrete in the garage so I guess I could clear the vehicles out of there and march them through with daughter set up to document with the iPhone. :) I always say I wish I had them used to that garage space in case of really severe weather. It is very protected down there. Not sure how they would feel about me lowering the garage doors with them inside.

Calm, Forward, Straight said...

True that!

A former yoga instructor told me much same about horses. She mentioned that horses' thyroids, also equivalently larger, can be beneficial to human endocrine systems. :D

billie said...

I wonder what the relationship is when the horse gets Cushings? Would be interesting to have human thyroid numbers along with the horse's to see if they mirror one another as they age.