14.10.20: More of the Same

I suspect somewhere along the way I've missed a session or two. Storm has been doing well, though there are scary things around the round pen, like nuts falling onto metal roofs. We continue to work on much of the same, backing up to check in and make sure that we're both on the same page and he's relaxed enough to continue with the work, then getting onto the long lines. He does better on the long lines now, and really gets right down to work. It must feel good to him, because he puts a lot of effort into it.
I have been dealing with more life lessons lately, and have spent some time mulling over them as I've been working. I still struggle with keeping negative emotion out of interactions when the energy level needs to get higher. I understand the principle that when the horse is distracted you simply have to out focus them. When the horse is relaxed and distracted, that is easy. When the horse is anxious and distracted, that is much harder. As his anxiety level rises, I begin to be concerned for myself, which makes it extremely difficult to manage my own emotions while attempting to refocus him. We have a precarious balance when he is in this state that we both manage to hang on. Building the trust that I know he's not going to fully blow helps, but I become extremely wary of his movements and the possibility that he might over react to something. This is particularly true when we are no longer in a "safe place" like the round pen. When I can be super focused and not notice anything outside of the round pen, it works fairly well. When I am having trouble managing all the chatter in the brain that comes with being somewhat distracted it becomes a much bigger challenge. Energetically I know how to build an armor dome around the round pen to keep us safe. But that takes a huge amount of energy and focus, and when there are a lot of things happening all at once, it is hard to summon that quantity of focus in the midst of it all.
So things continue to be a challenge as we relearn every lesson over and over again with a deeper meaning and deeper understanding. We'll see what the next lesson brings...
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