Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Dancing Horses, Rocky Cliffs & Letting Go

By Paula Renaye

I spent some time in Peru a few months ago. I didn’t go there for a spiritual awakening, to “find myself" or as any form of a personal quest. No, I went there for my daughter’s wedding. However, messages come whether we go seeking them or not, and I definitely found plenty of opportunities for self-awareness and self-improvement—one on the back of a horse.

As a part of our Peruvian adventure, we all took a day long horseback ride through the Andes to see the sights. Now, I would never call myself an experienced horsewoman because that is laughable even to me, but I did have horses for many years and managed to ride around the mountains of Colorado near my home and not get killed, so I wasn’t a novice. However, it had been a few years since I’d been on a horse. Thus, I was alternately excited, scared and dreading the pain afterward—I hurt just thinking about it.

The first half of the day was pretty easy with only a few steep spots and two creek crossings—or, in my case, airborne leapings. As my new friend Machote and I got to know one another, we came to some general understandings about how things were going to be. For instance, while I might prefer to walk calmly on the inside of the trail against the mountain, Machote preferred to prance along the crumbling outer edge in a glorious dance of death. This made perfect sense, of course, since he’d been down this road before, and—as I learned later—it was really just a side job to his main career as a dancing horse. I learned this happy fact when we stopped for lunch at the old Spanish mission. I also learned that the rest of our trip was going to be downhill from there—down, down, down the other side of the mountain to the salt terraces—and it would get a “little" steep. Well, yay and double yay.

Machote, of course, didn’t share my concern about our plummeting to our deaths, and was more than eager to get to the end of the trail, dancing merrily over the cupped out places on the crumbling edge of the cliff. I was giving it my best to contain myself, but I was definitely being triggered by the whole thing, and not in a good way. I’d been on similar trails with one of my own horses, “Tuffy," who seriously wasn’t. He was a big, fast horse with clumsy feet, poor decision-making skills and the propensity to flee at the drop of a leaf—backward if necessary.

Granted, back then I rode him as my own form of defiance—to prove that I could control at least one uncontrollable thing in my life. I didn’t, of course, and our outings were more like potential assisted suicide missions than trail rides through the Rockies. I might have actively courted death then, but things had changed and I didn’t want my new lease on life to end at the bottom of a ravine in Peru, thank you very much.

Well, even though I was enjoying the ride, all of those underlying thoughts and fears and déjà vu moments were at play underneath—thoughts that had nothing at all to do with horses, really. I consciously willed myself to relax in the saddle—and felt that I was—but when I got off the horse at lunch, my body told a different story. My legs were shaking so badly from holding tension that I could hardly stand.

The good news is that once I realized what was going on, things got better. I was still a little scared in places—okay really scared in one—but I had fun and was really glad I did it. I tackled some fears I didn’t even realize I still had and let go of a lot of old stuff I’d brought with me.

By the end of the day, Machote decided I was okay and we came away friends. Not because I finally got him under control, but because I finally got myself under control. As any true horse person will tell you, your internal state is directly conveyed to the horse and affects his thinking. So it is with us and our world. Whether it is fear and pain, or inner peace and joy, what we radiate out is reflected back to us in our experiences.

What is your world reflecting to you? Do you have a dancing horse in your life that you’re trying to keep away from the cliff? If so, ask yourself what’s really going on. Make peace with it and enjoy the rest of the ride!

Live your joy!
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Books Sold - 6 Nov 2011 to 31 May 2012

Some of you have asked me for my total number of books sold to evaluate KDP Select so here it is. Bear in mind, that results will vary based on genre and author. Good luck and remember, Keep Moving Forward.

Total - 120,836

1. Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out
Amazon Kindle - 42,559
Paperback -
Smashwords -

2. Frequent Traveller
Amazon Kindle - 35277
Paperback -
Smashwords -

3. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 1
Amazon Kindle - 462
Smashwords -

4. Mirror Me Martha (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 281
Smashwords -

5. Drive On Hope (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 190
Smashwords -

6. Blog-A-Licious Directory 2012
Amazon Kindle - 1
Smashwords -

7. Pandora's Reading Room 1
Amazon Kindle -
Paperback - N/A

8. The Cat That Barked (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle -

9. Dora's Essentials - Examining Anxiety
Amazon Kindle -

10. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 2
Amazon Kindle -

11. Elevenses from Around the World
Amazon Kindle -

12. Genetically Modified Foods vs. Sustainability
Amazon Kindle -

Blog-A-Licius - Sherbet Blossom



Dealightfully Frugal

Blog-A-Licious - The Few, The Proud, The Wife


My Soul Slippers

Blog-A-Licous - Textbook Mommy

Blog-A-Licious - Blue Frogs Legs

Blog-A-Licious - Pretty All True

Pretty All True

Blog-A-Licious - tbaoo



Powered by

Blog-A-Licious - The Invisible Art

Blog-A-Licious - Rediscovering Domesticity

Rediscovering Domesticity

Blog-A-Licious - Quiver Full

Blog-A-Licious - Cori's Big Mouth

Blog-A-Licious - Great Fun


Blog-A-Licious - Busy Wife

Blog-A-Licious - Steps To Happiness

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Blog-A-Licious - Toby & Max

Blog-A-Licious - Amelie

Raising Amelie

Blog-A-Licious - Peas In A Pod

Blog-A-Licious - Riley

Blognostics - Poetry


My Awards - September 2010

My Awards - September 2010
Awarded By Jo Frances

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded By Alejandro Guzman

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded by Kriti Mukherjee

My Awards - April 2011

My Awards - April 2011
Awarded By Roy Durham

My Awards - June 2011

My Awards - June 2011
Awarded By Sulekha Rawat

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