Safe Storage of Your Horsebox or Trailer
Equestrian Advice & Guides Beginners Advice
Like a lot of people, I was totally besotted with the idea of being able to talk to animals when I was younger. In fact, I distinctly remember telling people at one stage that I wanted to be a horse whisperer when I grew up, after reading Nicholas Evans’ book “The Horse Whisperer” and feeling determined that I would be someone who could communicate with equines. However, as I got older, the apparent reality that people could not “talk” to animals dawned on me and the idea gradually faded out of my mind.
Fast forward a few more years and Mini had entered my life. As I mentioned in my introductory article for Horsemart, I grew up with horses and ponies in my life, but Mini was different to them all in a way that is difficult to describe to people who haven’t met him – he was complicated and sensitive, stubborn yet willing, grumpy at times, but also incredibly loving with the kindest eyes.
Coincidentally, as I’m writing this now, it is the 2nd anniversary of the day we picked up Mini and brought him home with us, and those two years have been full of ups and downs, as is to be expected. It’s difficult for me to write about the bad times because there have been so many amazing times, when Mini has been the horse of my dreams. However, there have been days when I’ve felt frustrated with him, days when I haven’t trusted him and times when I’ve felt that the two of us just weren’t on the same page and, in all of those times, I would find myself thinking something along the lines of “I just wish he could talk to me and tell me what he’s thinking.”
Recently, I had an animal communicator come out to see us and tell me what Mini is thinking after all…
When Gill Leach of Fenland Holistics & Connected Horsemanship arrived, she was happy to give me an overview of what she does and how the horses like to “talk” – whether that be through feelings, pictures or thoughts – before getting started with Mini. To be honest, I was sceptical because I didn’t know much about animal communication and couldn’t understand how it was possible, but I have to admit that Mini was very calm and focused during the session so something was definitely happening, given that his attention span usually isn’t the greatest!
Gill told me that Mini was mentioning his past in Ireland and his time growing up there before coming over to England, and how he had found the journey to be quite stressful. She also told me that he had done some showjumping before me – even though I didn’t think he had – and that he’d found it difficult, which is why he wasn’t always the most keen to jump for me when I was pushing us both to jump higher. Given that I’d said nothing to her about myself or Mini (our past or our intentions), I was somewhat hooked at this point!
During the session, we talked about so much, from Mini’s past, to his likes and dislikes, to how he feels about his life and what he wants, and so much of it just “made sense.” To be honest, everything Gill said sounded just like something Mini would say and I have to admit that I genuinely do believe that she was communicating with him. She remarked how he liked the sound of the chickens as he found it comforting and how he liked to watch the “cheeky little pony” in the paddock because he found him interesting (we conducted the session on the yard away from the paddocks so there was no way of knowing that these animals existed unless Mini had told her!)
Interestingly, Mini also said that he thinks of himself as a pony rather than a horse and that he doesn’t want to be pushed into affiliated jumping. Instead, he wants to have fun, go places and enjoy things without turning everything into a competition. This part rang especially true to me because anyone who knows me knows that I am an extremely competitive person and I bought Mini with the intention of training him up to showjump and compete. Sometimes I find it difficult to take a step back and simply enjoy where I am and what I’m doing, instead of always pushing for more. That is where the root of all the difficult times with Mini came from, since his work ethic and desire to jump big never truly matched mine, as much as he would try his hardest for me.
Gill helped Mini to tell me how he felt like I’d rushed him a bit and put pressure on him to be my perfect “competition horse” without taking enough time to truly get to know and understand him. She told me that, now Mini has been with me for a while, he knows me and he does trust me. So, if I could take the time to make sure I really trust him over the coming winter, he feels he would be ready to go out and have some fun together in the spring – but only if I can make sure that I’ll take into consideration what both of us want and fight the urge to make everything a competition. In particular, Mini communicated his desire to go riding out in open fields and jumping over little fences, to feel free and calm and happy without pressure.
When she told me that Mini felt love for me, cared about me deeply and enjoyed his life with me, I had to stop myself from getting emotional, because our journey has been anything but simple. It felt so good to hear that I’d been making him happy, even if we didn’t see eye to eye on everything. Mini said that he knew when he first met me that he needed to come to me for a reason; to teach me how to step back and enjoy life, how to be resilient and trusting, and how to listen to him when he is trying to help me. I have always said that, as soon as I met Mini, I knew he was the horse for me and, even though he didn’t turn out to be my competition horse, I have never loved him any less because of it.
Thanks to Gill, I now feel that I have a much better understanding of how Mini has been feeling this whole time. Of course, I feel somewhat guilty for getting him caught up in my competitive ambitions, but I also have some wonderful memories of competitions we’ve done together, that I never thought I’d be able to, but Mini made them possible (such as Hickstead, for example). So I wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment that Mini came into my life for a purpose and maybe that is why I have never felt the way I do about him, about any other horse…