Thursday, December 01, 2016

Circling at F

I wrote earlier about the big red oak at F in my dressage arena, and how it's the corner where monsters sometimes lurk, where Keil Bay might act a little spooky or try to cut the corner altogether. It's also where the acorns fall and on any given day in the autumn if given access the herd will gather and crunch what they consider treats. So it's a place where monsters and good things live, which is sort of like how life is when you think about it.

I write a lot about how great Keil Bay is, and part of that is true in the most basic ways: he's handsome, well trained, elegant, kind of heart, willing to tolerate my quirks and imbalances in the saddle, and generally easy to manage. He also has a fun personality. He'll nudge for peppermints, untie himself in the barn, bang when he wants his wet tubs, sing for his supper, splash in the big trough when he's hot. 

But there's another way in which Keil Bay is great and that is his offering up of opportunities to take what is happening with him, on the ground, in the saddle, and look for what those things mirror in my life away from the barn.

Circling at F has to do with approaching a scary corner and choosing to stay forward, to come back at it again if need be to move through whatever's creating fear or resistance. Stopping at F to find some treasure and appreciate it. Every time I ride Keil Bay into that shadowy corner of the arena it reminds me that sometimes, often, this is the answer when facing larger questions in life. 

Over the years I've learned that sitting tall and straight, balancing my weight evenly in the saddle, looking ahead and centering myself is the very best way to let Keil know things are okay, and, that by circling at F, we're affirming that it's a safe place to be. I use this every single day in other ways. That all of this takes place beneath the big red oak, a perfect manifestation of the Tree of Life symbol, makes it even better. 

Sometimes that corner is Shadow and monsters, in the summer it is shade and relief from the hot sun. It's the same corner but it takes on different meanings at different times. The answer is always to ride in deep, circle when needed, and stop to experience the treasures when we see them. 


Grey Horse Matters said...

Great post. I like the integration with the Tree of Life. Things are always changing in our lives but it is possible to deal with what comes along if we keep our balance.

billie said...

So true about ongoing change!

Here's to a calm and peaceful winter season for all of us!!

Matthew said...

Love this observation of the changing meanings of 'F'!

billie said...

I was going to add a mathematical spin but decided against it! :)