It’s a sunny February Saturday. The horses all have that lazy sunshine-on-our-backs sleepy look. Scratching necks, I walk through the herd, saying hello. My personal horses, Two-Step and Blitz, look at me and assess if I might be there to ask something of them. I am not. We spend some time simply being together. Horses around us start to lay down, sunbathing for the first time of this year.
After a few minutes of hugging horses and taking large breaths of that perfect horse smell, I notice Blitz nosing the ground, searching. As he walks over to a melted patch in the snow and paws at it a few times, I realize he is about to lay down next to me. Never in his life has he laid down anywhere near me, or even so much as let me close to him while he was not standing up. Yet here he is, choosing to lay down as I am standing just five feet from his withers.
As Blitz lays next to me, I am overcome with the honor of this moment; he trusts me enough to let his guard completely down and go to sleep. It has taken years of building a relationship with Blitz for him to allow me into this space.
These are the moments we work toward reaching with teens at Stonewater Ranch; moments when we can share a space of trust. These times of “being” are far from wasted. In fact, I would venture that they are the most important moments we can spend, whether with a horse, a teen, or ourselves. And when it does arrive — within that moment of complete trust, to simply be in that space, not asking anything, not rushing for more, not ignoring what is being offered, but honoring the trust being shown — we get a glimpse of relationship, and sense God’s pleasure.
The Northwest Horse Source is an independently owned and operated print and online magazine for horse owners and enthusiasts of all breeds and disciplines in the Pacific Northwest. Our contemporary editorial columns are predominantly written by experts in the region, covering the care, training, keeping and enjoyment of horses, with an eye to the specific concerns in our region.