trueCOWBOYmagazine Sept/Oct 2014 - Page 54

Personally, I know that I am a better human being for having opened my heart to feel my horses and that has translated into every area of my life. At the end of the day, this journey will define my life and the success that matters most to me: learning how to nurture wholehearted loving relationships and having the courage to live from my authenticity so that I can bring my best self to the service of all beings. As a result of the time I have spent with my herd and knowing the depth of healing and inspiration that is possible within a mutually beneficial relationship, I founded a program called R.E.A.L. Principles of Mutual Connection - The Science & Soul of the Horse Human Bond. I teach these principles to horse owners, professionals in the equine experiential learning industry and to people fulfilling a lifelong desire to connect or reconnect with nature through horses. I rely on these principles when I am asked to consult on an equine behavior challenge The three original members of my herd, which is now a herd of nine, are on my Heart of the Herd Ranch logo: Montana, Homer and April. These three incredible horses have opened up a world to me that I could not have dreamed possible. Montana taught me mutuality. Homer true patience and gratitude and was the rock of the herd. And April taught me respect. My time with each of them brought lessons of challenge, warmth, love, tears and inspiration to do better by them by firstly doing better by myself. This story only begins to share and express what our journey’s have meant to us and we have become a true family. They taught me that sharing our time, emotions and selves had nothing to do with being a cowgirl. They are the pillars that I have built my wild woman revival upon. Part of my path over the last decade has been an immersion in understanding the horse as a part of nature, which has little to do with horsemanship as we know it. Seeking to know what it is that touched me so deeply when I started remembering my wild Montana spirit of a girl and why our relationships with nature and animals can be such a powerful ally in our human healing and self discovery. I am blissfully a complete nerd studying the leading scientists in human behavior and mental healing equine ethology, social and evolutionary biology, zoology, neurology and anthrozoology.