What are the limits of how horses can help us?


I had a call a couple of years ago that posed an unknown for me with my equine facilitated learning capabilities. The woman who called had experienced a serious tragedy in her life and wondered if the horses could help. I wasn’t sure, given the experience she had. I invited her to come over and we would explore it together.

She came over three or four times, each time we talked more about her life and her difficulty with moving past the tragedy. She groomed the horses and we reflected on the empathy we learn while working with them. We took a couple of rides together to see if the experience would bring her joy. That became our discovery. How to find joy in each day keeps us in the present, at least for that amount of time that we experience it. For many of us, riding a horse along a beautiful lake or through the trees is a freeing experience. Free from the rest of life. We feel their body twitch, we watch their ears respond to all stimulation (including us), we breathe deeply while appreciating the freedom of sharing ourselves with our horse who doesn’t judge.

I hope my friend is doing well now. I hope she is finding joy in each day. That is certainly why I have horses in my life.


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