A Night on the Farm

Image -barn with horse at night

After I had finished feeding the horses, my gelding, Jay walked out to the darkness of the night. Maya (my mare) remained in her stall. I grabbed my stool and took a seat to begin my meditation. When I closed my eyes the sounds around me became more apparent. The steady crunching of Maya eating her hay and the soft landing of her hooves hitting the stall floor whilc she walked about her stall, on some given moments.
My mind is chattering, trying to quiet my thoughts. I open my eyes and see Kichi (barn kitty) perched on the hay, next to my side.
I close my eyes again, to once again attempt to quiet my thoughts. I find peace in knowing, even though Jay walked out to the pasture out of Maya’s eyesight, she remains quiet and calm from her stall. I find peace in knowing the warm glow of light from the barn. In this peace there is the knowing that each of my animal family freely has found a comfort in their place on the farm as the day has come to an end.

As I slow down my racing thoughts, I could feel the tension of the week being released.

I sit in mediatation for several minutes and then I feel a presence near. I open my eyes and glance over at Kichi. Her eyes are clearly fixed on something. I turn around to face the front of the barn and there is the tom cat, that appears for a visit from time to time.  When I turn, he doesn’t move, but surprisingly, lays down, and tucks his front legs close to his body. Lying on the ground without any fear. He looks like a Lynx with the mane around his face. He lays there, with no concerns of my movements.
The movements, the noises, the choices the animals bring about, all in the night, speak the language of a night on the farm.

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright November 4, 2017

All Rights Reserved

Advertisements

The Favors in the Roller Coaster Ride of Life

Image -roller coaster #3

Life is like a roller coaster ride. Sometimes you are at the top of the hill. So very high that you feel as if you can reach the sky. You breathe in the moment of exhilaration and every cell in your body can not ignore the beauty of these moments.

Down the hill you go, with a speed beyond anything you fathom. It is exciting in these blissful moments. Not knowing, just trusting all will be well in your descent.

Then comes the coasting along. The ever secure moments of just floating along in life without any hills to climb. No barricades, no drama, no life changes. Just life as it is in the moments. Taking in all that you have been blessed with and enjoying the tranquility of coasting along.

Without warning, without planning, without any knowledge your coaster goes off track and crashes. Like a ton of bricks. You look back, forward, all around in shock. Wondering what happened. What could I have done differently? What decision did I make that brought me to this crash site? Is everyone ok? Am I ok? What will become of me? The questions of why become everything in those following moments. Devastation. Turmoil. Chaos. Uncertainty. Loss. Grief. Confusion. Surrounded by this life moment of what is much perceived as destitute.

But the coaster still lives on. There is no choice but to get back up, and rebuild what was lost. Perhaps you rebuild it differently this time. Perhaps you keep what works and the rebuilding of it restores your faith in the track again. Perhaps new doors open, and slowly your coaster finds connection with the track again. A new track, an old track, makes no matter, because there you are, in this moment, alive and well. You made it through the crash. There is no denying it.

Soon life blossoms again and you are able to coast along and enjoy the ride of your life at the top of the hill. That which motivates all of us to go on, to relive those moments that take our breath away. Those moments that offer no match.

Honor the moments of the roller coast ride of life. They are as varied as the actual roller coasters we choose to ride. It is this moment, these moments, that make up the tapestry of our life.

Laugh at them. Cry. Throw a tantrum. Jump with joy. Scream with anger. Sleep. Eat. Love. Pray. Give. Take. Remember gratitude. Change. Be humble. Enjoy it all!

Because this is what we get, the NOW.

And remember……This too shall pass…….

Hold onto the blessings that this roller coast ride of your life offers to you. Grasp them as if there is no other like them again.

By Diana Wanamaker

Oct. 22, 2016

All Rights Reserved

Find Marvel in the Moments

Image -scenic #5

Sometimes you just need to escape and unravel the marvels of the world. Step beyond the boundaries of everyday life. Do what teases your mind. Unleash the fun, mystery and adventure of life! Live on the edge for a handful of moments. Sometimes all it takes is to walk to the cliff and look below, and imagine stepping off and flying away into an adventure beyond the mundane of life. Stepping over to the other side allows more perspective to the life that is lived. There is only today, this moment. Live it to the fullest! Do what calls out to you, even if it is for handful of moments.
By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright Sept. 6, 2015

All Rights Reserved

The Window to Our Souls

Image -wild horses

I had watched a documentary movie called ‘UnBranded’, about a group of young men that train wild horses and together they ride from the border of Mexico to Canada. 16 wild horses, 4 young men and 3,000 miles.

Their story begins as they choose mustangs from the Bureu of Land Management (BLM), that had never felt the touch of a human hand before. They have never known the tragedy of neglect or abuse, they only knew the wild, as free as one could ever be.
Then the selected horses were taken by a mustang expert and together they trained these wild horses for 30 days. They showed them working with these highly unpredictable animals. As they filmed the placing of a halter on one horse. The trainer slowly put that halter on, careful to keep his distance, just in case the horse went into sudden flight mode. As one of the cowboy’s placed a saddle on his horses’ back, the horse backed up and slightly snorted at this item that was soon to be placed on his back. As they worked the horses in a small round pen, keeping guard and alert to what was going on with each step that horse took, for the horse could turn at any given moment and attack the trainer/cowboy.
I couldn’t help but notice some similarities between what they were doing and some of the same cautions and lessons I had been thru with Sadie (my mule). The fear that you see in their eyes, the uncertainty of the next movement they will make and the months it takes to see a small step of progress forward.
It was a timeline of progression, documenting each milestone as they trained the wild horses, preparing to take them thru the most rugged and untamed country of the United States.  As the training progressed you could see the relationships and bonds that were developed between the cowboys and their horses. The personalities of the horses emerged, and this once wild horse who only feared and hated the thought of a human, now was enjoying the warmth and love from a person’s hands, that had offered them something beyond the wild. It was a beautiful and amazing transformation that took place. The cowboys became emotionally attached to the horses they had spent months training. A partnership where leadership was offered to the wild spirit of an animal, that once only knew leadership from its own kind.

Unbranded movie image

I couldn’t help but think of Sadie Lou (my mule), even though Sadie had not come from the wild. She had known a life with people, but probably had never really experienced a connection to a person. Before her life at the rescue, I imagine that the home she came from she was asked to work long days. As history of the equines we obtain, it is quite common that there is little known of their past.

It was said that Sadie came from an Amish family, pulling a cart, and was ill treated. In the horse world, it is not uncommon to hear the stories of how the Amish mistreat their horses and mules.  They are considered a work animal, only there to assist them in their duties and providing for their lifestyles’ and living.

There is no bonding, no love, no connection. I imagine Sadie came from a place where she was horribly mistreated. She was to work and work hard, and even though she probably performed, she was abused. Any trust had been broken, any partnership had been betrayed, any possibility of love had been depleted and replaced by a hand of abuse. With enough of that, they start to shut down, they begin to fear any hand, any partnership and resolve to what they know from all that is left, their instinct. With that instinct they do what they know best, to flee or fight when fear enters their world.

What I found interesting as I continued to recall this fascinating film, was some of similarities with Sadie and the relationship I continued to build with her, was much like those wild horses. But I also took notice that even though they shared some commonalties, there was one difference.
The wild horses feared and fought the introductions to captivity and the people they encountered, not because they had ever felt the hand of abuse across their body, but because they are wild. They instinctively feared man.
Sadie’s fear and flight response’s were due to what she once knew about how people can be. She probably has felt the hand of abuse upon her body more times then she cares to feel. She feared remembering what had happened to her. The wild horses feared what they instinctively knew. They feared by instinct, Sadie fears were derived from experience. Both resulting in similar reactions.

Photo -Sadie Lou resized
But with the wild horses, they learned to trust, and their bonds and personalities shined a spotlight on what we wouldn’t expect. Domestication from love and leadership was born.
However, if one offers their trust and break it time and time again, there will be a lot slower road to recovery back to trust again. So very much alike, yet so very different.

With that I could really relate to how Sadie felt. How a blow from a hand, asking for her to work again and again, and possibly abusing and neglecting her time and time again, would only result in never really being able to trust a human. I could deeply sympathize with her and what I imagined her story to once be.

I could see how easily that could be a story of my own. Too many harsh words, from too many people. Too many blows across the face, too much betrayal, too often without love, too often tears from relationships that hurt time and time again. To the point, where, like a wild horse, or like a horse that may had taken enough, would just turn and fight or flee! Push and poke long enough and an animal that used to be open will shut down, an animal that used to cower could turn and fight. Take them to that limit, and you never know what to expect, and you never know where that limit will be. Understand that it is not that much different with people.

As they say, horses or mules are the windows to our souls…

Photo -Sadie Lou in paddock

By Diana Wanamaker

October 5, 2015

All Rights Reserved

Tell your story by Celebrating your History

Image -past #5

We preserve our accounts of history such as; art, sculptures, books, music, historic buildings, and much more. We create holidays in remembrance of great people and all they have done to achieve, which celebrates their history. We create scrapbooks of years past, celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and graduations of achievements and time past, as well as times to come. We share pictures of our own history and the fond memories of times past.  It is testimony of time that defines our culture and writes out story.  By preserving it, we preserve an entire culture and it’s achievements.
We are told that our own history has created and shaped who we are today. Yet in the same breathe we are told to forget the past, leave it behind, live in today. Yet those moments of our past have brought us to this moment.  If we ignore our history, and all that has been, we are saying it never existed at all.   The good, the bad and the ugly of history, whether it is personal or a part of our country’s culture, it needs to be protected.
It should be honored & respected. It is part of who we are.  Glanced at and admired, not just the beauty it has created in this moment but for all those previous moments that has shaped this moment! Just as we would visit the battlefield of the civil war and watch the reenactments, or as we marvel at a painting in a museum of time past. Knowing what was endured to create this moment is just as important as this present moment.  Yet we shun it away, pretend it doesn’t exist, speak of living in today, but many walk the planks of silence with a history that is just screaming to be released. To be acknowledged, to be accepted, to be honored, no matter the battle they fight.  But how can we escape such moments when they too are part of who we are, part of living today and all we have become today.

Image -past #4
Not that we should rent permanent space in those ugly times of our history, or design permanent plots in those moments of ugliness. But to sit in awe & acceptance of it’s existence. Of what we have endured and survived. Weep over the tour of pages, the missing chapters, the stories with chapter heading’s followed by blank pages. Laugh & rejoice at the pages where words leaped out at you and you could imagine the crowds cheering at the amazing accomplishments and hurdles you have overcome.  Preserve the torn and tattered pages, as well as the pages that shine bright colors and glisten in award.  Honor it all. Rarely has any personal history been created without a tragedy or a secret of shame untold.
Our distinctive and unique past is much like a museum of precious art, it’s presence in the moment as you gaze at it’s beauty, also comes with a story untold of how it was created and all that it endured to finally become a piece of beauty in a place of preservation.
Our history, is the moments that have shaped the present and are to be held up and admired!  Remember them as part of your story.

Honoring to all who struggle and to all who have achieved great things because of the struggle!

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright May 25, 2014

All Rights Reserved

Facebook —–The madness & beauty of the connection

 

Image -connecting with others

As the months passed and I was abstinent from the sometimes obsessive habit of Facebook, I came to realize some important knowings about myself and Facebook. The light and dark side to it all.

After leaving Facebook with a final post of heartfelt devastation and hopelessness, I found myself standing alone. Very few people reached out, very few people even raised a care of my heartfelt call for the need of support.. Others made attempts to cover it with a band-aid solution, that typically only left me feeling worse about myself and the endless hopelessness in my personal situation.

Others, whom I would have expected to say something, and quite frankly should have, DIDN’T! Simply because they have known me for years, know my struggles and know that when I am that upset, and cry out for support, that I mean it. Only to be severely disappointed by the lack of care and understanding.

In the beginning, as time passed, without Facebook, I felt even more alone and more isolated then I did on the day of the post. What was wrong here? Were my expectations too much? Was my friends meter over calculated? No one gave a care whether you are there or not. It didn’t matter! All those posts, all those moments of authenticity, all those connections. Was it all a waste of my time and energy?! How could I have been so fooled by it all?!

I was taken back and realized there is truly only one person that you can count on —YOURSELF! If your lucky, a loved one or two.

I was done! FED UP with FACEBOOK!

No posts for 7 months. Occasional visit to Facebook, to message people (business related), retrieve my ‘memories’ and posts, and then left. I no longer viewed the timelines, or spent mindless moments on there. After awhile I was beginning to enjoy the abstinence of it all.

As time passed, a person or two would reach out to me. Where are you? Are you Ok? I haven’t seen you on FB. More time passed, and more people asked where I was. I shared my reasoning for being absent, and thanked them for caring enough to recognize I was gone. So, despite my animosity towards FB, my connection to others had created an impact in other’s lives. I had not been forgotten, I had been remembered in ways I had not realized. And it was in that absence, I realized that my life mattered too. That it too had value, even amongst the busy, loud and countless millions of others on there. It can be so easy for one to feel so insignificant to the world, when using the measurment of Facebook and the friends that have joined you. Especially, when you walk away and no one is following.

Image -quote connecting

Here is what I learned from my Facebook abstinence:

Even when it seems that you stand alone, when you have walked away and turn to see who is following and no is there as you walk away, wondering where you are…. It is untrue. Each person has made an impact to many others in their lifetime. Each person, no matter how small, or large their presence on FB, has imported a memory into my life, and their life into others.
I learned how I live my life with Facebook and what I place as importance, is not what others will. I know that I always make a point of checking my friends list from time to time. And when I see that someone has not been posting, I send a message to check to see how they are. It can sometimes take weeks or months, before people realize you are gone, because there are hundreds of friends, many of us have. It takes time for it to catch up. (Im speaking of those that are active on FB). I don’t pay much attention to those that are not active. I don’t know your there, if you don’t participate. You have to join in, for me to know your there. 🙂

The next lesson that continues to repeat itself throughout my life, no stranger to many of us.
Those that you thought cared, and should of cared, DID NOT. Those you never would have guessed would have cared at all, DID CARE. Then there were those that cared all along and were true supporters and in the sense of Facebook friends, were truly friends before, and after Facebook.

Things have changed on Facebook, from previous years. It has become more of a news feed then a place to go to connect with others. We are bombarded by advertisements, tragic news media stories, rants and raves of different organizations or groups to join, tragedy after tragedy with attached causes to join. Copy and paste this and I will be your true friend, stupid chain letter’s (absolutely hate these!), and endless chants about how we need to be more positive and change our thinking or the ongoing religious ways of how we need to know and pray as god says we should. Lets not forget the political ranting and raving that went on during the presidential election (2016). That was a true turning point for me.

Facebook and most on there are as fake as fake can be. Many trying to be someone they are not, to ‘look good’. Get more likes, get more friends, followers, etc. It’s just one big fake news feed filled with expectations from so many, in so many directions. Each person arrives on Facebook with a different agenda.

We post tragedies of animals starving, or kids dying in Syria, or the most recent cause in the limelight. Reaching out to our fellow FB friends and followers in hopes to get others to march with our cause and our belief system. Meanwhile, when a fellow Facebook friend (used lightly) is in real need. Desperate need for someone to listen, for someone to be a true friend, to be there because of a life tragedy, then they leave quicker then a flock of birds to the sound of a gunshot!

There is enough hardship, tragedy, and cause sitting right next to us. Our neighbor, our church fellowship, our co-workers, our family and our friends. The reason we are on Facebook and in this world is to connect with others. To gather a sense of community, that seems to be slipping away faster then we can save it. It is your choice whether it is with your church going group, or the animal rights group, or with your real friends and family. That is the beauty of Facebook. It allows us that connection, that so many of us need to sustain. To breathe. To live. Because our lives are so busy, that we don’t even have the time to spend with a friend, over a cup of coffee anymore, so we need to connect by social media, texting and emails. It is the reality of this world.

Facebook is a friendly place, where we can connect with so many others, from so many places. Places we would never be able to visit and meet those wonderful people. Sister souls, mentoring souls, advocate souls, shared interest souls, etc. This is the beauty of Facebook.

Facebook is not a place to air your troubles. No one has the skill, interest or know how to deal with anything but ‘happy’. Another sad fact. Now bloggers! Now they are some people that are REAL people, dealing with REAL problems! They put their heart and soul into their blogs, revealing the most unveiling truths of their lives. Putting it out there for many to see, with many there to support whatever they have chosen to share.  That is what I call TRUE long distance friendships. Those that WILL reach out to someone when they are down and out. Those that support, not judge another by their words and life happenings.

We ‘like’ the latest tragedy. ‘Like’ the page that has a cause to help those kids starving in Africa, or to help those with the latest Mother Earth tragedy. But when there are real life problems with people on our Facebook page. Then the crickets sing a song, and your as isolated as being dumped in the desert. It’s all so noble and gallant to rescue from afar. To donate, to say I know this person who runs this rescue(prestigious connection), blah, blah, blah! But, when it lands on our doorstep, whose really ready to step up to the plate?! You won’t need a counter for this one.

What are real life problems. Losing a job, health issues, divorce, losing a child, facing homelessness, foreclosure on your home, continued poverty, unable to get a job, death, car accidents, etc. These are real life, modern day, problems of people who live in the United States! We don’t live in Syria, or Africa, we live in the U.S., and if we don’t start connecting to our communities and to each other, then we too will be in such devastation as these countries!!!

Ok. So, lets look at that. Why not help a Facebook friend that needs a job? Or needs support during a divorce. I know I have! Countless times supported many Facebook friends, with their call for help, from life tragedies, and life challenges. I have given many free consultations to help people with their animals, and have offered countless others in assisting them in many different situations. (*Note I speak of helping others from person to person, not a business to a person. Business is business and needs to make a profit, and even so there are times when we need to set aside the bottom line and just give to those in need who truly seek improvement of their life).

Granted there are times when we all have enough on our own plates, to not be able to take on anybody else’s problems. Life is a never ending challenge of pursuits, blockers, losses and responsibilities. Who has time to help another, right?! At times it is just too overwhelming for any one of us, even those with the biggest and most selfless giving hearts.

Most people don’t have the know how, skill, guts or stomach to deal with people’s problems. These are what I call ‘sunshine friends’. Never report anything going bad in your life. Always be happy. Never vent to them about life. Just pretend to be someone you are not, and put a smile on your face and pretend to be happy, while your with them. But hang out a listening ear to all their troubles! Cause they will dish it out, all too often, being a friend to them with their troubles, but heaven forbid if you come to them with your troubles. Facebook is all too often a sunshine friend, which offers it’s pluses and minuses.

Facebook is predictable. Be happy. Post happy things. Post triumphs, accolades, winnings, new houses, new cars, boyfriends, marriage, kids, pets, vacations, graduations, new jobs, etc. Anything that marks the happiest milestones of life.
The one exception to the usual celebrations that are warmly accepted on FB by the majority rule, is death, grief & loss, illness, accidents and Mother Nature tragedies. These are the only accepted tragedies of life that FB friends and followers will embrace and pour out their support to those that care to share it.

I also realized Facebook is a timeline of my life, and of those whom we share our FB page with. In those pictures, we see their life, as well as ours. As the ’shared memories’ appear in my timeline I realized it was a journal of my life. With it’s marked dates I could recall that time in my life and what was going on. Reminisce through the moments past….. How I had endured it, celebrated it, grieved it, or triumphed over it! It was a reminder of who I was, what I had done and where I had been. Who was important, who was not. I realized how important that was.

Once upon a time we had photo albums that we scrolled through to embrace our life. Today, we scroll through the pictures on our phones, Facebook and other social media to view the moments in life. I then realized that without it, it became an even more lonely life, and that I had lost a valuable connection to others and the world. For those reasons alone, I knew I had to return.

Then there is the sweetness of Facebook. Connecting with people who were once of your past, and are now a part of your present. There is a lot of joy in knowing that people once again are thinking of you and remember you and want to be a part of your life again.

The other delights of Facebook are the connections to the world. To witness the creative innovations that make this world a better place, the entertainment of those that share their gifted talents; from artists to dancers, singers, actors and more. It opens your world to a much larger space, larger then yourself. That in itself opens doors, ideas, creations and your mind to the world and all it’s beauty.

Image -quote connecting with others #2

From the funny quips, to the beautiful pictures, to the profound words of wisdom, there is much to find on Facebook, that will keep you coming back for more.

To the many support groups where you will get the hunger of your needs met, by so many that pour out their hearts to assist others in the cause that have inspired them. To share the knowledge, the testimony, the rapture of transformation it bestowed upon their life, offering it to all those that seek to experience the same.

Let’s not forget what FB does for business. How important a tool it is grow a business. The exponential growth that can be a part of your business, with your effort and willingness to pursue it. It is your’s for the grabbing, all it takes is connecting with others, And those connecting with them, and them connecting with others, etc. The endless opportunity that can come from a FB business page is limitless!

It is all about the connection, the love and the beauty of this space we call life. We can either jump on board, or skip the ride. But to expand that connection we must stay in tune with the latest and greatest ways of connecting, and that involves social media. It’s still a choice, but it is one I keep coming back to, even after a period of abstinence, it still reigns in my heart as a place to stay connected!

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright Apritl 3, 2017

All Rights Reserved

TIME

Image -old clock

Whether it has a rushing insistence on us, or a gathering hold of moments treasured,

Or the slow delays that lead to capture our over peaked interests

Or the precious value of enjoying the paced pursuit of something that offers great rewards
and remarkable marks upon our life

Curious quests involving patience of your time and watch in delight the promise of what time offers.

In the hopes of times to come and cherish the time past, lost or forgotten

Time that seems to stand still during the moment of tragedy

The test of time,
the savory of time.
Time lost….time gone….times remembered….

Another time…

Each breath we take. Exhale in and out and feel the breath of time. Breathing life Into our existence within each moment

Fragments of time that come together as pieces in the puzzle

Time of pain, love and joy

Time passes so quickly

Our most precious gift of this life is Time

Without time we no longer exist
In the spirit world there is no account of time, only space, uninterrupted by time.

At any moment the gift of time can end for us or a loved one

Capturing time
Letting time pass
Living in the ‘now’ of time
The destruction of time
The birth of time
Welcome to the right time!

To see the birth of a child and watch it take in its first breath
To watch the coming together of two who love one another
To kiss the muzzle of a horse’s nose
To hear the purr of a kitten
To feel the sunlight upon your face
To laugh and feel the joy of life

Choose it wisely for once deposits are made, there are no withdrawals
Never to be duplicated again

In each encounter lies the real gift…………….TIme