Hello, my sweet listeners … we’ve been hanging out via this podcast for about a year now. Last November, I wrote and recorded the first 12 episodes. They were in the can.
The script came to me in March of 2021. Literally, came to me. During that time, every morning, I grabbed my laptop and wrote down everything I knew and what the animals had taught me. Three weeks later, Part 1 was done. Part 1 turned into this podcast sharing with you the biggest secret of communicating with our animals.
Having a chat. Verbally. With your animals.
It is the biggest and best tool in your grooming box.
Period. Full Stop.
Let’s breathe on that one.
Part 2 is about your hands-on, energetic, and somatic skills. I have talked about it in many podcasts if you recall. I constantly learn from animals how we can use our bodies, hands, and energy to connect and communicate with our furry and feathery friends. And I love to share it.
And part three is about our intuitive skills. Allowing our bodies to feel our intuition. Keep our minds open and curious to hear, see, and intuit as we connect with our furry and feathered friends.
I am excited to facilitate how to communicate with words, body, and intuition at a therapeutic riding center later this month. And I can’t wait to see what the participants and the horses will create and what we will learn that day.
Over the winter, I will design a course for you. So, no that matter where you live, we can work together. Helping you become fluent in communicating with your body, mind, and intuition. Yay 2023!
In case you wonder what that means, I can tell you already that …
: You’ll learn to see the world through your animal’s eyes — and experience your own life through a beautiful new lens.
: You’ll become a powerful listener, a precise + compassionate communicator, and a more confident decision-maker.
: You’ll hone your intuition — attuning to subtle energetic shifts, non-verbal signals, and your own body compass.
And, maybe most importantly : You’ll honor + celebrate your animal’s spirit and your own — as you connect in meaningful and mindful ways.
Ahhhh, that leads me right into today’s podcast.
Today, I will give you a real-life experience of what it means to see the world through your animal’s eyes. What it means to be a powerful listener, a precise + compassionate communicator, and a more confident decision-maker. How I pick up an energy shift and listen to my own body compass and that of my animal.and how it leads to celebrating and honoring + my animal and myself.
My grey Arabian mare Shana had a Melanoma, a very common nodular skin disease of grey horses, particularly when they are over 10 years old. Her melanoma was, as they often are, in a tricky spot. It grew on the underside of her tail. Unlike dogs or cats, horses do not have bones to the tippy end of the tail. The so-called dock of the horse is about 10 inches long and consists of bones and muscles wrapped in tight smooth skin underneath and tail hair on top. The actual nodule was about two and a half inches from the top of the dock, and the vet came to remove the nodule about a week ago.
Understanding what Shana was about to go through, anesthesia, cutting into her tail, recovering from the overall and local anesthetic, and then healing an open wound that did not allow for stitches, I wanted to set her up for success. So, an hour before the vet arrived, I brought my pendulum, essences, and oils into the yard to check in with the herd. Who between Shana and the boys needed a Chakra balance? Upon my offering, Shana, who was grazing in the backyard, pointed to the boys. “They need the oils and essences more than I do,” she said. And true it was. Both boys dove into the oils, and by the time they were balanced … so was Shana. Funny how that works, huh? Herd dynamic. Entrainment. You have heard me talk about that many times before. ;-) We help one, and the others are helped as well.
Before the vet arrived, I told Shana and the boys what would happen.
Our vet greeted and drugged Shana, and while he unwrapped his instruments, I showed Shana the electric clippers and turned them on so she would not be surprised by the noise when some of her tail hair was shaved to get better access to the nodule.
Once Shana had semi-rightened her wobbly legs, and surgery began, I breathed deeply. I was holding her tail off to the side to help the vet gain access to the incision site. My solar plexus was embracing Shana’s left hind quarter. And, I became still and breathed. Long deep breaths. For myself and my girl.
Shana never twitched or reacted in any way or fashion during the procedure. She and I stayed very soft during it all. In the end, the vet sprayed aluminum spray as a protectant and barrier on the wound. He put a piece of gauze on top of the wound and then used a fabric-like bandage that stuck to itself to wrap up part of her tail.
I was instructed to take off the bandage after two days and apply more alu spray as the wound would most likely bleed once I removed the gauze. The vet warned me to stand off to the side out of the kicking zone when applying the alu spray. I agreed. Blowing cold silver air particles on an open wound under my mare's tail could certainly cause her to react.
I checked Shana’s attitude and aptitude for the next 24 hours. Was she her engaging self with me? Yes. Was she helping the boys with the herd? Yes.
When I checked her hind end, Shana tucked her tail. She was slightly sensitive when I gently felt around for heat or drippage. And so I left it alone and told her we would take a look the next day.
The next day was a whirlwind of events, and I didn’t get to check up on Shana until it was dark outside. I didn’t want to get into the whole gauze removal under barn light conditions. But I also felt in my body that loosening the bandage was important. What to do? I told Shana that I would simply try to loosen the bandage by cutting into it from above and below.
As you can imagine, cutting into the bandage immediately spread the cut into a v, and I could feel my body feeling less restricted with every snip. Part of me wanted to snip, snip, snip, but I also knew I needed Shana’s agreement with all of this. So, in between cuts, I checked in with her. Felt her out. Looked into her eye. Was it still soft, was she engaged, or was unease stacking up inside her?
I didn’t want to hurt her, and I also didn’t want to get hurt.
Every time we took breaks, we rewarded Shana. David had a handful of cinnamon sugar pita chips and would give her one whenever it felt right for me to take a break. I listened to my and Shana’s bodies. You might know what I am talking about.
I can feel anxiety or discomfort rise in my body. I can feel when energy, mine or Shana’s, builds. It is like pressure-cooker-air. Dense, foggy, and hot. And just like with a pressure cooker, something, sooner or later, has to give. So before anything had a chance to give, before Shana would react, I always stepped away from Shana’s tail, took a breath, and praised her for her fabulous cooperation. Then David gave her a snack.
We did not give Shana treats to distract her. We gave her treats to reward her. I needed her to be with me, not distracted. And we rewarded her for her stellar communication when she gave me an ear or eyeball that indicated the pressure was building up.
Now, here is a sidenote. I would have had a very different routine if this had been Cutter. What kind? Not sure. It depends. Right? Remember that from one of the last podcasts? I would be open and curious. Play it by ear. See the world through Cutter’s eyes and feel what Cutter needs to be balanced and safe.
The next morning, we repeated our little routine. David at the helm while I snipped through the bandage. After cutting away big wings left and right of her tail, Shana still had the gauze and a half circle of vet wrap covering the underside of her tail. The gauze was sticking to the wound, and the vet wrap was sticking to the gauze.
The thought of removing the bandage felt like a zinger in my body. Not good.
Keeping the half-shell in place, allowing more air to come near the wound, felt like a gentler option. I told Shana I would leave the protection on for a couple of hours. I explained to her verbally that it could come loose and wiggle itself down the tail. It could also come loose and feel a little sideways, but she would know how to swoosh it loose. And, if it came loose and it was bleeding, I asked her to keep her tail as quiet as possible until I came out and could attend to it.
A couple of hours later, I walked into the pasture, and the bandage was gone. I found it yesterday, five days later, in the field. When I looked at the wound, I could hardly believe it. The wound was beautifully healed and still had a shimmer of alu spray across the board.
“You are amazing,” I told her. I was so thrilled that she and I both had such a good experience while going through this nerve-wracking event.
It can be both, right? Nerve-wracking and amazing.
My partner, David, always talks about me living from a mindful operating system. He is a former computer program developer, so this is his language.
We all have our own personal Operating Systems, he says. They are based on nature and nurture. That is our baseline. An ever-evolving baseline.
My operating system likes to apply a mindful overlay in every action I take.
And that is true because when I am mindful, I see the world through Shana’s eyes.
When I am mindful, I explain to my horse verbally what she is about to experience and how I will help her.
When I am mindful, I am present and allow my body and my intuition to inform me. I am not just listening to directions from the veterinarian, I am also listening to myself and my mare
And, when I am mindful, I can feel a little shift in energy and listen to my own body compass when to move ahead and when to take a break.
Let me tell you, the elation I felt when I saw the bandage was off and the wound looked wonderful, was huge. And, I didn’t need to spray more cold aluminum in a precarious spot.
I had honored Shana’s communication and spirit and could now celebrate our beautiful teamwork.
Because of our mindful and meaningful relationship, one we have procured over many years, I knew that Shana could handle any funny business that might have come our way. IF the bandage had gotten up her butt sideways, she would allow me to help her back to a calm and relaxed state. I would have to chat with her about her experience; once she felt heard and seen, she would be calm and satisfied.
Again, depending on the animal, I’d tailor that conversation. For Shana, a non-patronizing way of engagement is key to connecting with her. Acknowledging her experience always opens her heart.
Being fully in the experience with Shana before, during, and after the procedure allowed my mind, body, and intuition to inform me. If you feel me, you know it is delicious, haha.
Here is my invitation, no matter if you got big or small procedures on your schedule or if you groom, tack, or feel into events this week. How can a nerve-wracking situation still be meaningful?
How can you let your body and intuition guide you at the moment?
Reach out and share with me what you discover.
As always, open and curious … bye bye und Auf Wiedersehen.