The Value of Relationships

Image -friendships #3

Too many hurts and losses of friendships in 2014. As every friendship I knew disappeared as quickly as they came in. Some that were a lifetime, some that were new and developing. They say that time is supposed to heal you, but at times the pain pays a revisit.

I often find this correlation between life and all it’s challenges from the relationship with my horses. Here is what I have learned…..(thus far)

No relationship is easy. Not even with our horses. There are times when it is more work, more money, and more time, like any relationship. Sacrifices are made. There are times when we are giving more then getting. It stretches and tests our own humanity and compassion for another. Times when we question if it is all worth it.

Remembering measurement is not always in the now, but the cumulation of moments past, and those times yet to come. Moments of struggle rarely last forever. Value of another’s life is not the total sum of what they are always giving to us, but the relationship as a whole.

There is no question where there are those relationships that certainly are disposable for the weight and burden of what is lacking is far greater then what they bring to a relationship. Holding on for the mere sake of holding on, no longer makes sense.

But with our horses, they age, they become sick, injured and the weight of responsibility to care for them is greater then we can bear at times. Now all of a sudden, because they have nothing to bring to the relationship, such as unable to ride, to some, they are no longer of value. Disposing of them as if their life no longer matters. As if all those moments of giving they offered years before have lost their value.

I often see this correlation in friendships and intimate relationships. Once a mistake is made, once a friendship is struggling, many just place value on that moment of brokenness, pushing aside all the years that the relationship has offered value. All forgotten as quickly as the snap of your fingers.

We live in a disposable society. There is no honor in loyalty. Very little is tolerated, when it is broken, sick or no longer meets our needs. We throw it, replace it, divorce it, break-up with it, dismiss it, leave it, ignore it and walk away from it.

silhouette of the man walking above the clouds on the sunrise

Relationships are HARD! From human to horse. It is not all glory. There are times of cussing, tears, anger, defeat, hurt, and the visiting thoughts of giving up.

What is important is to embrace the humanity of ones self. For relationships inevitably will change, not always in our favor, but in the light of humanity.

Every living creature, no matter how broken, sick, lame or unusable to us, still has value. Every friendship or partner in life will test us, make mistakes, and come to a brink of intolerance. Only those that can withstand the tests of time and change will be left. It is only our heart and soul that measure that. It is seen through the eyes of another.

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright June 25, 2017

All Rights Reserved

Upon a Moonlit Night

Image -barn in moonlight #2

I walked out to the pasture tonight, to check on the equines. The moon was glowing. I stood there in the quiet of the night. Not even a whisper of the wind. I stared up at the sky and didn’t want to move. It was so inviting. I went back in the barn and grabbed my stool and brought it back out to the pasture to sit near Jay & Sadie, as they grazed. Jay came up to visit with me and then moved further into the tall grass of the pasture. Sadie followed. I moved my seat closer to them and began to mediatate. 3 am in the morning, and there I sat in this world that seemed so balanced and untouched by the turmoil of life.

It was difficult to quiet my mind, it has been so long since I have been able to meditate and I can feel the disconnect from the spiritual realm. As I began to balance my thoughts, the subtle background noise from Jay shifted. I could hear a thump on the ground. My eyes opened to see him laying down. I breathed in and gasped, unable to let out the air I just took in. I sat there watching to be sure he was ok. He just sat there. He seemed alert, grabbed a couple bite’s of grass and continued to lay there. Sadie moved in closer to him, as if to check on him. He rolled over and went back to just laying there, with his ears tuning into the noises of the night.

I sat there, taking in this moment. It is a peacefulness I have not felt in months. I had no desire to move. Jay got up and then just stood there, no interest in grazing. I went over to check on him and he seemed fine.

Oh how I miss this connection. Of just being in the moment. Taking in the quiet life of the barn and the horses. It is a glimpse of more to come for me, when this school year ends. But, for that short while, I could escape the chaos of constant movement and endless mind chatter, along with unceasing ‘to do’ lists, feeling further and further from any divine sacredness. Credit due to the quiet nature of the life of equines, upon a moonlit night.

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright June 1, 2015

All Rights Reserved

The Underdogs of the World

Image -grabbing your hand

When someone comes from a place of dishonor, defeat, shame and/or failure they lose despite their efforts. When someone comes from a place where no one believes in them, they fail. When someone comes from a place of no support, when all their bridges are burnt, when no one stands by their side cheering them on, they will fail.

The odds are greater that they will choose to return to a life that comes easier then success, to a life of failure. When disappointment is yet another result of an attempt at success, unworthy becomes their name. When the label comes to a place of unworthy, there is no place to climb to gain honor. All their attempts, all their efforts, their hopes, dreams and promise of a better tomorrow become lost. They are the forgotten ones, the one’s left behind, the one’s whose past, whose dishonor supersedes even their grandest efforts to break thru by whom all who have labeled them.
Do you know what is the number one reason and the only reason why those who have beaten the greatest odds and who have succumb the greatest challenges, become winner’s?
SUPPORT! Someone, even if it is only ONE person, that stands by their side and see’s their potential, believes in the possibilities of who they can become, and forgets the dishonor of their past, or the multiple failures of their efforts. However, few will stand by such a person, for accolades of success are what people honor. They are the hero’s that stand with the plaque in their hands. They are the ones that flash their material rewards, and reap the financial affluence that stand in the favorable circle of recognition. Those rewards, those accomplishments, that financial gain, those gifts of reward are distinctive honor, acknowledgement of character & integrity.
Yes, those that achieve success, those that earned those rewards, they too have had set backs, they too have had what seemed to be unsurmountable challenges, or maybe even came from unthinkable beginning’s, they too have had failures. But the difference between that crowd and those that come from a place of dishonor, is that they were eventually rewarded. They had steps forward, they had success, they were able to grasp and hold onto the promise of a new future with all their efforts.
The underdogs of the world, ones who had to climb out of the furrow of anguish far greater than any average successful person ever had to endure. The underdog, the little guy, the dark horse has come from a place of repeated years of failure, with no plaques of success, no money to line their pockets, and no one to stand by their side cheering them on. They are the loser’s of society. They are unwanted, unloved & un-supported. They too need someone to reach out to them. The underdog who is willing to climb the mountains of change and make their life one that is worthy and deserving of respect and honor. They just need a hand to help pull them from the suffering.
As they said in the story of “Seabiscuit”, winner’s are built to be tall and sleek, with superior breeding and superior training. They don’t come from small physique’s, who are taught to lose, and walk with a limp. They don’t come from having a jockey that is too big, or a trainer that is too old, or an owner that has no experience in the sport of racing.
It is a brutal, competitive world out there, where watching and protecting your back has become a way of survival of the fittest in the world of business. Anybody can succeed with all the right supports in place, and who come from a background of excellence. The more support in all categories, the more likely the success and with the least resistance.
Anybody can pick the shiniest penny, the most dazzling resume, the many high titles and degree’s of achievement. Take a risk on an underdog, a person who despite their efforts to change, continue’s to fail. They need just someone to grab them by their hand, and help pull them out of the hole that they continue to fall into, despite their efforts. Someone who believe’s in them. Someone’s who see’s their potential, not their black marks of failure.
Take a risk, chose an underdog, a defeated person and really make a difference in someone’s life.

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright May 2015

All Rights Reserved

The Gifts of a Lost Love

Image -man & woman love -source shutterstock:kiulkson

Photograph Credit:  Shutterstock/Kiulkson

I had a dream……….
It was one of those D r e a m s you care to never wake from

I saw the tears of his remorse
I felt his arms around me, hugging me in all sincerity as I wept and wept the tears of loss
tears that longed for more of him
that grieved what was there
And mourned what was never a reality

This love I once had
We shared decades of adventures together
My lover, my friend, my companion

We started out as lovers and ended as friends

It was by no means a healthy standard of love
For it was my heart that was despondently rejected by his own wishes

I longed to feel the love from him, that I felt for him
Yet he reminded me time and time again that I was not seen in his eyes as his girl
Nor would I ever be
We were just friends

As that I left it
Respected it

But deep down I longed to feel the safety of his masculine strength around me
I longed to hear the roar of our laughter
To experience the acceptance of his friendship, despite the arguments, or flaws of my own, or the distance I put between us exasperated from his ‘bad boy’ ways

I longed to know the pursuit of his persistence when I ignored his calls
To know the reunited friendship after time apart, as we had never been separate

It was a roller coaster ride with this man
For his distraction was far more powerful than any love could abide by

With him came uncertainty, deception, manipulation, and a host of dysfunctional behaviors
Yet, over time, we remained together
Through the ebb and tide of this pandemonium life we led

In my heart always longing for more
His direction always reminded me I would never be more

Myself forever pursuing those that rejected me and pushing away those that longed to be near me

I have left a legacy of broken, highly dysfunctional relationships with men (and friendships)
Men who never loved, and quite possibly were never capable of love in that time and space we shared

He is changed today, they tell me, and from what glimpse I have seen
He is happily married and has changed his ‘bad boy’ ways

Yet, for reasons that are clearer to me today, I still dream of the pieces of what we did have that truly were genuine and beautiful
How I long to know that again
My soul cries out to remind me that this too is possible

Not with this one
But with another

For it is my lost love that taught me how to look for the goodness in love
That I had no concept how to choose

It was the degradation of myself that was missing
And the forlorn love that, at times, visits me in a dream
Reminds me that this too is what is missing in life

Today, he has found love and family of his own
Many, many years have passed and we walked away from each other
Each pursuing different paths
Each rebuilding our lives from a life that held us captive a
nd led us apart from who we truly were

It is in these visits of fantasy from dreams or visual longing
That I am reminded of what is possible
From a man where true love never was possible between us

From a man that was once was a broken as I was
had unknowingly given me glimpses of what a healthy love should be

What I should be pursuing
What kind of love I long for in all the possible healthy ways

For today, I am more aware of who I am and what I am worthy of

And it is these visual reminders of a lost love
That tell me that it is me I lacked loving most
And today as I learn to value and love who I am today

It reminds me what I am denying myself of

The beauty of a lost love and friendship I once had
And all that is possible for the future

Given so obscurely from a dejected love of the past
A pleasant gift of possible love for days yet to come

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright April 30, 2017

All Rights Reserved

Heavens Door

Image -heavens door #2

I knocked upon heavens door the other day.

“May I enter?”, I said. I want to take a tour to see the afterlife please. “No entry allowed”, they replied. “Your time here on earth is not complete, there is more life to be lived”. “Go live your life to the fullest, for it is this life that will be treasured and remembered when you one day pass through heavens gates”.

“May I ask another question, please?” I am curious, the stories of those that have seen the other side, only to return to this life again. I hear of their grand journey to this place that is filled with all the love and light one can possibly take in.

“If Heaven is so great why are we not vying to enter thru heaven’s door, instead of fighting to live here in this space?”

Because my curious one, although heaven answers to all of life’s challenges, no longer will you be A-LIVE. Heaven is a dimension beyond our space here on earth.

No longer will you be able to hear the greeting of your horse, or feel the soft fur of your cat. No longer will you know the feeling of triumph of overcoming challenges, or the sweetness of enduring so much and knowing the strengths of your character.

No longer will you be as unique as you are. There will be no more cultivating that essence of who you are into an almighty purpose.

No longer will opportunities accomplished leave your immortal mark in this world of exist.

No longer will you smell the sweet smell of the flowers on a spring day or hear the whistle of the wind through the pine trees in winter’s time.

No longer will you cry your sorrow or laugh with joy or find satisfaction at the end of a long day of hard work.

No longer will you know the elated joy of riding your horse along the countryside, or hear the voice of your friend. Or see the smile of your mother and father’s love.

Yes, the joys of life my curious one, may… at times, be absent of the entitled bliss of heaven. But it is your life today, as you breathe, that bring meaning to your immortal soul. It will be here for you to view, these enormous moments of life, when one day you enter through heaven’s door.

It is here for all, when our time time has expelled, it will be waiting. There are no prejudices or bias upon those who enter. There are no prerequisites or passes where only the elite may enter. There are no special memberships, costs or dues to pay to enter.

So, go now, and let your higher spirit guide your life. Give no strength to the ego that finds joy in your destruction.

Live your life in gratitude and joy.  Embrace the love and beauty of it all.  For each breath you take, each moment you share is the reason for your being.  You are as special as the next one. There is no other like you, now or ever.

Till Heaven’s door calls……

By Diana Wanamaker

Copyright April 30, 2017

All Rights Reserved

Living a Conscious Life


Image -candles and flowers

Don’t become what has been done to you. Our animals show us time and time again how they exemplify this act. When I lie down at night and my head rests upon my pillow, moments before I drift off to sleep, I review the events of my day.  When there are those days, that leave you restless because words of hurt were directed at you, that often leave you tossing and turning.  Intruding upon your minds peace.

I wrestle with the thoughts but work at not denying myself the anger that another man or woman may have caused intentional harm my way. I ask myself, how did I respond to their anger directed at me?  Did I respond with respect and with love? Did I respect and love myself thru and after their rude intentions? I ask myself how am I contributing to this cycle? What can I do differently?

Because at the end of the day, it is me I have to live with, in conscience, in sleep, in the mirror, and within the heart of my soul. So, no matter how often I continue to be betrayed and hurt by men and/or women that pass thru my journey of life, the one wish I have for my life, is that I don’t become one of them. That I remain humble, accountable to myself,  to others, and continue to live life respecting & loving those around me.

By Diana Wanamaker

April 15, 2017

All Rights Reserved

Freedom from the Past

Diana standing next to water

Have I made you happy?

Has my life touched you in a way that has brought more joy to your life then all the mistakes combined?

Do you remember me as someone who brings a smile to your face, and allows your whole body to relax with the feeling of comfort and fond memories?

Did the goodness of my spirit touch yours in positive ways, and far outweigh any negativity that divided us?

For it is in this moment of a hostile situation with yet another barn owner, that I recognize the truth of joy and pain. Of respect and sympathy. The difference between deliberate and mistaken intentions.

I recognize the powerlessness that swallows the value of life I hold. I recognize greed in one of it’s ugliest forms. I see the power of those that far outweigh any power I have, and the choices they make for their own selfish needs, taking no consideration of the lives they negatively touch.

And in these moments, I recognize the vulnerability and powerlessness that was bestowed upon me years before in childhood. When I had no choice. When I was forced over and over again to comply to my enforcer’s demands. Each time laying an imprint upon the path of my life. Each time echoing a cause and effect that would be repeated throughout my life.

It surprises me the over abundance of such enforcers in this world. Those that pay no attention to those they have power over. Throwing their weight around, threatening actions, demanding unrealistic requests.

Time and time again, I am hurled into this cul-de-sac. It circles it’s weight around me and over and over again, yet I attempt to respond instead of react. Each time it takes a piece of who I am, and I feel defeated, alone and helpless. Please stop it! Stop this cycle, this repeated imprint of a time that has passed.

Image -freedom from the past #3

It is these experiences, that I acknowledge what I am feeling and finally recognize where it originated from. One situation after another I realized that it is the powerlessness that I feel that has held me captive to these repeated occurences of  my life. It is that feeling of having no choices, no place to turn, no answers to the problem, that place me in a fight and flight response.

Just as my horses do, so quickly upon instinct. They too hold the memories, unforgotten of the past that may have scarred them. That imprinted a fear, a powerlessness of their own well being of life.

The lack of value that I had in those moments past. The blatant disregard for my presence then, or how the possibility of my powerful presence in the future was diminished. My life held captive and at risk. The callous and insensitive moments. Robbed of what was more powerful and almighty, then the enforcer’s darkest side. Stripped of innocence, a victim was born.

So, I have to ask myself. How do I become more powerful in these situations? How am I contributing to these situations? How can I change this pattern? What can I do differently to make this outcome different, so future events it will play out differently? Is there anything at all I can do? Or do I just need to accept, this is the deck of cards I have been given, and learn to live with it.

Prepare for it’s uninvited calls. Find a way to feel empowered, and stop living in the ‘fear’ zone. How can I feel empowered in a situation, where the opposing side has more power over me? How can I stop feeling like a victim and start taking my power back?!

Is there only one way out of this? Am I being cornered to accept that I must give up the very thing that I love most dearly in this life? Or is it the very essence of what encompasses who I am, and what was so freely taken from me, that time ago. I allowed it then, I fight for it today!

How ironic it is. The very thing that has become the lifeline as much as the blood that runs through my veins, was also a part of that time ago, when I lost so much that could have been.

It is the farm life, the horses, the animals that I held dear to my heart, from the first breath I took. It was in that very setting, that my enforcer took actions upon me, without my permission.

But it is those horses that have been all I am, they have driven me to live a life of passion. To live a life of honor and regard for other beings that often trust their powerlessness into my hands. I was given the hand of being in the position of having power over another, I made a choice much different. I created a life with my horses that respected the companionship and trust that was given to me. I made a difference. I responded to my horses and to others in my life, that was different then what I had learned.

image -horse in water with sunset

Today, she is a grown woman, yet her innocence, her vulnerability is reflected directly in front of her, with the life of her horses. The ugliness of the barn owners, reflect the enforcers darkened life and actions. The barn owners are the enforcer. My horses are a reflection of who I was, that time ago, as a small child, before I lost that powerful essence. The horses own innocence, their helplessness, their powerlessness are given to me, as a gift.

So, I have fought, time and time again, against the actions of the barn owners. Fighting for the respect and well being of my horses. Being the voice they don’t have. Just as I wish I would have done, with my enforcer. As the screams from the barn echo it’s haunting upon my life today. I take a stand, as much as I can. I fight. I take flight. I act in a diplomatic way. I approach it differently each time. I learn from it, each time. Each time is an opportunity to relive what I couldn’t do as a child.

Then finally I found respite in an empty barn. 2 blissful years of being in a barn that was encompassed with peace, joy, love and respect. A place where I finally found what worked and offered the value of what I needed most.  No longer did I face barn owners, for I was the Queen of my own roost.  I ran my own barn, I made my own decisions about my horses and their well being.  I had finally found a change that worked!

I literally sang and danced in the aisle ways, on days I was filled with gratitude. I spread my hands up in joy and looked to the stars and gave my earnest thanks for bringing me this barn!

I spoke to my gelding, Jay and said, “look at what we have Jay!”. “We did it!”. We have a barn that is like a home we can call our own. I would rejoice on many occasions. Celebrating these monumental moments of triumph! It was the perfect place. As wonderful as if it was my own.

Lake George Barn #2

I had finally reinvented the past and started a new pattern for my future.

But, why now? How did I create it? How did it come about and how do I replicate it?
And why didn’t it last longer? I thought positive thoughts, and I embraced the moments of having such a joy!

Then again, this comes to an end, once again in the negative ways. Repeating themselves. Not as intensely. Yet stressfully. Not as lengthy or as enduring as previous times. Responding as the woman I am today, yet reacting inside as the child that I was back then. I had to place a balance on all of that.  Quiet the inner child that wanted to scream, while reconizing the confident woman of today. Staying focused on the skills and experience I had.  Understanding to not settle for less. To value and honor my inner callings. To have hope and faith that I was a strong, capable woman.

The same questions of ‘why’ reentered my thoughts. Those dreaded redundant questions.
It was then in those moments that I realized that maybe I need to be asking different questions.
To focus on those questions that would ripple an effect that I could embrace, instead of having a fight or flight response. Instead of reliving the embossed impressions of the darkness from childhood.

And once again, I moved from a barn that I treasured and found yet another barn. Not only did I find one barn, but I found several barns, and was placed in the position of making a decision. I was never given such choices before.

So, I moved to yet another empty barn. One that allows me peace, freedom and all that I dreamed of having. No longer do I stand as that helpless little girl. No longer do I accept the role of a victim, but triumph in confidence as a woman of strength and perseverance that deserves the respect and goodness that I seek.

My call to the angels who watch over me had answered.

I had finally walked away from the moments of the past and was on the path of reinventing my life as I saw the value I bring and as I loved myself more, I was given the life I seek.

The enforcer had left.

I was free!

By Diana Wanamaker

April 9, 2017

All Rights Reserved