What the Horses Taught Me


Photo of Koelle Simpson used without permission but with great love.;)



The word brings up images of failure, of men with white flags on the battle field.


No hope.

So why in God’s name would anyone want to use surrender as a tool to end suffering?

Why would we think that the act of surrender would be a good choice in our situation?

The only way surrender is a good tool to use is if you are ready to shift your whole life. Surrender cannot be faked, it cannot be half-assed. It has got to be chosen and well, surrendered to.

The things I have surrendered in my life have all been things that I have just hit rock bottom on – my drug addiction, my overeating, and now just recently my drive to succeed.

You see I recently got back from my annual trip with my Rowdies to visit Koelle Simpsons ranch out in California. The personal, spiritual and emotional work I do daily with the Rowdies comes to a head on this yearly retreat. We each know that we are in the best place to shift our beliefs and let go of others that are not serving our lives.

So the Equus Coaching is unbelievable – basically the horses act as big mirrors to your energy and if you think you can hide who you are really are – you are wrong the horses see the truth. It comes off you in waves.

So as I was going into my ’round pen’ time, (the time where it was my turn to get coached) I knew what I wanted to get coached on (the fact that I was hating everything about my life- I know, easy client right?) and I started to explain what I wanted to work on to my coaches and my horse that was working with me was at the other side of the pen.

So we are talking (well, I am bawling..) THEY are talking and Koelle tells me ‘You don’t hate your life, you are just exhausted’. She tells me to look over at my horse. He has fallen asleep.

Uhhhh.. asleep? He read my energy and thought I was sleeping? So HE FELL ASLEEP? That’s how tired I am?

What a relief.

I am not crazy. I am not depressed. I am tired. Exhausted actually.

Women do too much today. We are expected to hold a full time job, raise kids, keep and nice home and then have a side business for extra cash. Oh and of course stay fit and slim.  And trying to do any less than this I felt like a failure, like there was something wrong with me.

The horse showed me the truth. I am exhausted.

So where in my life did this come from?

Well my number one priority on any day of the week is to be Successful. With a capital S.

Success is more clients, more money, more evidence of wealth.

It is my driving force.

It isn’t done out of love of what I do, it was done out of fear of not having enough and losing everything if I wasn’t constantly striving.
So my cup of energy was drained before stepping foot out the door.

So I am exhausted- says my horse- and yes it is because I am doing to much, but my mind went to an interesting place after getting that news. It went to a place near my heart that I keep very tight. Clenched. Vigilant.

This place under my heart I put in charge of keeping an eye on the world. Making sure we were ready for anything that comes our way – cancer, bankruptcy, car repairs. Anything that came my way I would be ready for – or so I told myself. It felt like a ball of tight resistance right under my sternum and that is exactly what it was – resistance to letting the world just flow, just to do what it does. 

Why let the universe just flow without your help? Because it is going to do it anyways.  My perceived control over the universe was set on a foundation of pixie dust – not real. So I loosened this area – relaxed it. And I felt like I was very vulnerable, that it was risky to let the universe do it’s thing without my help. How helpful I have been. Eye-roll.

Feeling the vulnerability of letting go – of surrendering – is a time where many would clench it back up. Too scary out there! But this is where it happens – surrender. I can choose to surrender, to accept vulnerable or I could take up my post again watching a world that doesn’t discriminate on who get’s what tragedy, on a world that is not waiting to see who puts their guard down first to slap that person with the ‘death of a loved one card’.

So my exhaustion was coming from overwork – yes, but also from a energy point of trying to control the universe.

Surrender is not ‘Fuck the World’ it is way closer to ‘ I let go’. Surrender happens only when the pain of keeping your old way finally outweighs the pain of letting it go. It is a card played by the spiritually, emotionally or physically bankrupt. Or exhausted.

And surrender is just what is needed to transform a life.

My life this past week has been what I always wanted it to be. Real connection with women at my work. Enjoying my job. Seeing my husband in a new light. Seeing our business as a place of love for what we do – not as a place of fear.

This last week I felt the physical act of surrender and it was humbling and horrifying and an act of pure faith.








One thought on “What the Horses Taught Me

  1. Kathie- this is beautiful. Ever since you wrote those couple of sentences about your horse work on a FB status, that one line, “turns out I don’t hate everything. I am just exhausted.” has been running a loop in my mind. It resonated with me – and instantly made me understand and feel release about some of my current interior state of affairs. I’ve been hoping you’d write more at length about your experience – as you’ve done here. What a stunning revelation. Thank you for sharing it. Love, Leah

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