Sabina Cox

My 13-year old Appendix Quarter horse Teddy and I had already established a very intimate bond, as he is an extremely affectionate and deeply sweet hearted horse Being, who we named Teddy for just that reason. But there was something in me and in his aura, that still intimidated me, perhaps because when he arrived he came with a very strong name, with a recent story that was unclear, and less than ideal, and also because he was exhibiting behaviors that were so not like the horse who was originally transfered cross country. Also, our other four horses in the herd were at that point, really the only other horses I had intimately shared life with. Sharing day to day life together for more than 10 years our relationships had been  cultivated deeply, trust was not an issue. And also, being Tennessee Walking horses, they are lankier in composition and not all that muscular by nature. But Teddy horse looked more like a super-hero, broad chested and those hind quarters…  well I didnt know there were so many muscles, all so highly defined and on display in those power legs! 

So yes, intimidated underneath it all, which left a feeling of lack of trust for us both, especially whenever I wanted to do anything “to him,” even groom him. This part felt sad and unfamiliar to me, this mutual suspicion underneath the love we palpably shared. That he would walk away when I groomed him, when grooming is such an intimate exchange of kinship for horses and it takes a certain amount of trust for two herdmates to line themselves up and allow themselves to surrender into the ritual of grooming and being groomed. And Teddy just could not allow it yet with me. 

At this point  his hoof care was regular as he was fine with our trimmer, but this not even letting me groom him, felt to be a gauge of the trust between us and it deeply niggled at my heart.

I had always been curious about the Trust Technique and Mia and I have been soul friends over the years so when I heard about her involvement in teaching this technique I asked if she would do a Zoom session with Teddy and I.

One session. Changed everything. The mistrust gone. The intimidation gone. The sharing of the present moment between us became luminous. This became the common ground of true meeting oneanother, simple and clear. And again and again it is there that we meet because of Mia and the Trust Technique. 

I have not tried to pick up his feet as I am still savoring this phase of him coming to me to be groomed and his thorough enjoyment of it. And, the other day, and tears come to my eyes sharing this, he asked if he could groom me! I was lying on the picnic table and he began sweet side to side motions with his muzzle and lips, like horses do with each other when they are parting the hair to groom one another and find that spot. When he began doing this I could feel the clear, in the moment communication, the crystal clarity of his asking, “may I groom you?” It took trust because in the past he has done licking and snuggling which has turned into nips and bruises… but the trust was right there overflowing, for, I knew we were at a very different point in our relationship Now. A point called pure Now-ness. So, in silence we communicated yes, no teeth please, and I gently groomed his neck as he licked my neck and cheek, ear and shoulder, moving his muzzle side to side with such care and trust. 

I know lifting his feet will be no problem now, but I am also not coming at it as something that I feel I need to prove as a gauge of our shared trust, because this foundation of mutual trust is seaworthy, no matter the condition of the sea.

Thank you Mia.


Teddy and Me.





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