22 years ago, I was on my last day of a six week stay at Pat and Linda Parelli’s ranch in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. I was sitting with my luggage and saddles piled up, waiting for the transport up to the road for the bus to start my long journey home to Australia, when my Indian friend Kurt strolled up, leading his two giant quarter horses and offered me one last ride in America on one of these stunning creatures.
I hadn’t ridden for a few days at that point because the little mare I was riding was lame.
I don’t know if I can express what a big deal this was. Number one, I wasn’t what I would call now a very good rider – very little Feel, scared easily and in those days, always pushing through it and creating tension in both me and the horse – which in hindsight is probably why the little mare went lame.
And these were mythical horses. One of them had drawn him in a dream for months and he trekked all over the country, following his dreams to find him. To Kurt’s tribe, horses are a part of their spirit, so to offer me to ride his horse was an incredibly big deal and to turn me loose with just me and the horse – that was an even bigger deal.
Anyway, out I went onto the forest trail, I don’t remember exactly now, but it was maybe a kilometre or so winding up and down and around little hills. We’d seen bear sign out on that trail before, the claw marks on trees like the bear in the photo is doing and I’d joked with the other riders about what would happen if we ever met a bear out in the forest and who would make it back to camp first – me or the horse.
So here we were, trotting along, me focused on getting the feel and rhythm of this lovely horse and as I came around this corner, there was a bear right there beside the track – so very close, maybe 50 metres, less? It was weird though, the bear looked at me and I looked at the bear, the horse looked at the bear and the bear was looking at the horse. We all looked at each other and I wasn’t scared, the horse wasn’t scared and the bear wasn’t scared. I can see him still, with his head turned back over his shoulder looking at me as he slowly moved away – and none of us was scared.
It didn’t seem any kind of big deal after all.
So the horse and I were still trotting along and a few minutes later there was snake. Now I don’t know how many of you horse riders have ridden right over the top of a snake, but it’s disconcerting to say the least and we rode right over the top of this one.
This image is also incredibly vivid in my mind all these years later. When I looked down, he was between the horses front and back legs, his head was pretty much in line with my stirrup. The snake looked up at me, I looked at the snake, the horse looked at the snake and none of us was scared.
NONE of us was scared…
Now THAT was seriously weird, because I was snake phobic back in those days. I’d been bitten by a snake when I was a crawling baby and had sleep walking nightmares for much of my childhood, where I could feel the snake crawling around my ankles, so to not be scared of a snake so close was totally weird.
Anyway, we finished riding a couple of times around the trail, getting the feel and rhythm for Kurt’s horse, then I went into the meadow and practiced my flying changes, which was the one thing undone on my Level 2 exams and eventually came back to where Kurt was waiting with his other horse.
We chatted about how the flying changes had gone and what a beautiful special boy the horse was and then I said “wow I had two weird things happen out there” and described the bear and snake incidents.
Kurt went pale. He said “You have no idea what just happened to you do you”? ” Errr no…” I replied. Actually I was on Prozac back then, so I probably wasn’t aware of too much at all, but that’s a story for another day.
“Most Indians get one big sign in their life and you’ve just been given two in one day. The bear is for courage. Whenever you need courage, reach for the bear. And the snake is Caduceus the Healer.”
Well the only healing thing I had done at that point was a trigger point muscle therapy for horses and I wasn’t very good at it. Given what he said, I guess it’s not weird at all that I came back from America with feel in my fingers for the trigger point work and not long afterwards started a much more intensive journey as a healer, the life path that so defines me these days (and a life path that got me off Prozac!)
Later on in my life I was given the Eagle too in a incredibly powerful way, but that too is a story for another day!
What prompted me to write this blog, was an email that Lois forwarded to me from Nick Polizzi at Sacred Science about noticing and listening to the signs – the synchronicities that The Universe presents to us. What a beautiful email it was. He questioned the unusual and unexplainable patterns as being the universe’s way of trying to communicate with us and he found deep reassurance when divine beacons show up in his life.
Me too… 🙂
And here I was this morning writing a 30 second email for the Happiness program about amplifying our positive energy with the synergy of connecting with others and surrounding ourselves with like minded people.
No coincidence at all…
So I’ve put Nick on my amplified energy list – reached out and signed up for his emails and bought his book “The Sacred Science – an ancient healing path for the modern world” where he took a group of eight desperately ill patients from around the world and brought them into the heart of the Amazon rain forest to put the mysterious medicines of native shamans to the test.
And no surprise to me given my experience with healing work, the result stunned them.
So that you too can surround yourself with more like minded positive people, I’m sharing how to pick up Nick’s book here. I can’t put just one book onto this Amazon list, so I put my other favorite life changing book here by Anita Moorjani. If you haven’t read this one yet, wowww… I can’t recommend it too highly. 🙂 I’ve come back and put my two favorite books for interpreting animal signs too, for the reasons you’ll see in the comments section.
Oh yeah, while Kurt and I were talking, Pat came out of the conference he was in to take a break, heard about my flying change experience on Kurt’s horse and tested me and the flying changes for my Level 2, I passed it and Pat himself awarded me my level 2 just minutes before I flew out back to Australia. And later that year, it was Linda who mentored me into the instructor program which started my teaching journey with horses and the teaching and the healing all got woven together.
Speaking of synchronicities, there’s a very interesting conversation going on in the comments!