Forward

Riding the Rocket“Forward” is a big buzzword in certain equestrian circles. It’s a technical term for  particular kind of movement on the horse’s part, in which the horse is sufficiently balanced and energized to carry itself and its rider (or pull a vehicle or work in hand or on the long rein or…) with ease, grace, and consistency.

It doesn’t even or always mean forward movement, either. A horse can have a forward halt in which all its parts come together and it halts square, with all four feet under it and the balance to move off immediately if asked. It can even back up “forward” in the sense of balance, engagement, and impulsion. It’s all in the intent, rather than the direction of motion.

All of which is relevant to other parts of life than the back of a horse.

When I started thinking about this week’s blog, I was going to do a  riff off a post about Barn Drama from Desert Horse Equestrian, which in turn riffs off a Wall Street Journal article. Oh, do I have stories. Some amusing, some dramatic. Some downright scary.

But then I thought, no. I am trying to make this year about Forward. About moving onward with balance and engagement, and not getting stuck in old patterns. That includes revisiting old horrors and ancient resentments.

Learning experiences, now; history as lesson and example. That I can revisit. But as soon as the wheels start to spin in the deepening rut, it’s time to look for another subject to talk about.

I spent the first half of this year in a downright swamp. The wheels spun and spun. Everything seemed to be at a standstill, even while every day was packed to the gills with endless circling Stuff. There didn’t seem to be any way out. Just, stuck. Stuck with the horses, stuck with the farm, stuck with the writing projects.

I’m told by the astrologically minded that there was an actual reason for that. Planets of blockage and obstruction were all piled up and keeping anything from moving forward.

Hokay.

Whether that’s true or not, it is true that as our searing desert summer gave way to the summer rains, something came unstuck. I got my hindlegs under me, so to speak, and started finding ways forward–and the energy to pursue them. I stopped making excuses for not riding the current training project, and started pushing myself to keep the writing projects as much on track as the rest of the cascading Life Stuff would allow. I even started up the editing business again (and put up a sale), to help keep the horses fed.

I didn’t expect it to be easy, and it hasn’t been. There are still times when I curl up in a ball and sing la la la la. But determining to go Forward, and understanding what a complex concept Forward is, helps keep things moving, well, Forward.

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Forward — 10 Comments

  1. My favorite definition of ‘forward’ is ‘balanced; ready to move in any direction’.

    And while it’s often necessary and sometimes life-saving to vent frustrations (e-motions are called that for a reason: let them flow through you, then be done), and often necessary to have a third party say ‘they did WHAT? That’s definitely not ok’ because you’re so badgered that you no longer trust your instincts, walking away and doing something constructive is a necessary step.

    I hope that things not only look up, but stay looking up!

  2. “I am trying to make this year about Forward. About moving onward with balance and engagement, and not getting stuck in old patterns. That includes revisiting old horrors and ancient resentments.

    Learning experiences, now; history as lesson and example. That I can revisit. But as soon as the wheels start to spin in the deepening rut, it’s time to look for another subject to talk about.”

    I think this is so important to finding satisfaction in life. I have seen people constantly revisit slights and insults that occurred fifty years in the past, still harboring bitterness, even years after the perpetrator was dead. No one benefits from it. No one’s life is improved.

    A couple weeks ago I saw a quote on twitter that went something like “Forgiveness is accepting that we can’t perfect the past.” It is what it is, but why not make the most of the time we still have?

    • That’s really good advice. I tend to spin wheels and homestead in ruts. Forward is Hard. But Forward is also life, and wheel-spinning can kill you.

      So we keep on pushing. Onward!

  3. “I spent the first half of this year in a downright swamp. The wheels spun and spun. Everything seemed to be at a standstill, even while every day was packed to the gills with endless circling Stuff. There didn’t seem to be any way out. Just, stuck. Stuck with the horses, stuck with the farm, stuck with the writing projects.”

    Whoa. This is me this year. I’ll look for some Forward with the rains, too! Glad you found yours…

  4. All the best for your plans, your books and your horses. May the second half of 2014 be your best time yet.

    Love your blog, love your books. Just working my way through White Mare’s Daughter.
    -Hannah