Each day, as Mother Earth’s light starts to awaken the farm, I slide my muck boots on and begin my morning venture to the barn. Before my boots can even exit the garage, I am greeted by at least three of our six barn cats. We call them “barn cats”, but they are more like house cats that happen to live in the barn…with a deluxe cat tree and heated house, of course! Even with these luxuries, they try to sneak between my size 10 boots, running to the door, hoping someone will let them in.
Wifey is a softy, especially for the cats. I find her often walking around the house, with a barn cat cradled in her arms. She always has a mischevious excuse for why they need to be inside. Keep in mind, we already have two house cats, so the need to have more purring, hairball machines is completely unnecessary. But, this is just one of the many reasons why I love Wifey. Her motto has always been…If an animal finds its way up the driveway, it has a home here at Indigo Acres. (Please, would someone deliver a mini donkey or a pair of black hogs to the end of our driveway!)
After snuggles from the kittens, I continue my journey out of the garage, passing the 12 ft weeping white pine, yet still unable to see our barnyard friends. Regardless, they hear my boots and I am greeted by an impatient whinny. How can the simple closing of the screen door and opening of the garage send an energy-filled domino affect throughout Indigo Acres? Velvet, our 21 year old Morgan, has once again, let her voice be heard. I would like to think that she is saying, “Good morning!”, but I know her real message is, “It’s about time!”. Velvet or “Velvey” as I have taken to call her, is a pushy broad who loves her food. Once her sound-off has occurred, it is followed in succession by the quacking of ducks, the “maaaaaaaa-ing” of goats and the clucking of numerous chickens. It’s breakfast time on the farm and Velvey is first one in line.
Often, As I find myself spending time with the horses, I am reminded just how much they have changed me. Velvet, my friend, teacher and mirror has especially touched my heart and soul, like no other. She likes me. Only me. We have a connection….an understanding. Something in Velvey has resonated with me from the beginning – I feel her innate strength and power, often hidden by her introverted self. I understand this on many levels. Like Velvey, none of us is “less than” or “more than” – we are just one of the herd with our own unique gifts and abilities.
Over the past three years, and with a little help from a few furry and feathered friends, I have come to realize the power of animal therapy. Making a connection with a critter is like no other. I feel blessed that the most difficult days can become a little brighter, due to a chicken perching on my shoulder or from a goat’s loving snuggle. I trust in them. I tell them where I hide the chocolate…(if that isn’t trust, I don’t know what is!) I lean on Velvey especially, when I need a little sunshine in my day. When I look into her eyes, I feel a gentle wisdom, followed by a sense of peace. She understands me. I know that no matter how difficult the day can be, there is always someone waiting in the barn for me.
Thank you, Velvey for your friendship, trust and patience!
“…and I whispered to the horse, trust no man whose eye you do not see yourself reflected as an equal.” ~Don Vincenzo Giobbe
Love Yourself…Embrace Yourself…Just Be You…