Posts Tagged With: instinct

The nose of the mind

I’ve written a lot about instincts and intuition and trusting your gut.

I trust mine and I rely on it often, with people I’ve known forever and those I’ve just met.

Recently my job has taken me out into the public a lot more; I love that.    It can be daunting at times: I never know what I’ll get but that’s the part I enjoy the most ~  I’m prepared for anything and often experience just that.

Yesterday was one of those days.

It was a meeting I had second thoughts about attending.  There was a small part of me that thought “ahh .. it’s the same old message and the same old people and you have many other things to tend to.”  But something told me to go anyways.  And so I did.

Driving through the countryside, past houses, farms and fields, I felt myself relax.   Looking across the crusty wind-shaped snow, I counted the pivots.  The pivots took me back to where I grew up, where massive pivot systems run in circles and water is piped up from rivers and reservoirs across the dusty prairie.

When I arrived at the meeting place, one of the first people I saw was The Grizzly Bear.  I’ve written about men like him before, and I run across many on a regular basis: they’re often older than me, experienced, opinionated. Many like to hear themselves talk and be the voice of authority. Others are gracious and welcoming.  Some – not so much – that’s fine, there’s room for all of us.

Instead of taking my seat I took a chance and approached the Grizzly.  Quietly I asked him about the pivots.  His look told me what I knew he’d assumed all along:  that I was just some city girl out in the country where she doesn’t belong.  I explained that I grew up on a farm and we had pivots, too. Then I inquired as to their water source because I hadn’t seen any large bodies of water around.  These simple questions opened a floodgate of information my way and before the meeting began, the unthinkable happened: he smiled at me.

The meeting started and questions from the crowd soon followed.  I answered and took notes and did my best to manage the information flow.  His posturing was still there and maybe it always will be. But, for once, it was no longer directed at me.

Instinct is the nose of the mind.” -Delphine de Girardin

nudges

Google.images.com

 

Have you ever felt a “nudge” about someone or something?  Do you listen to it?

Categories: Confidence at any age, Determination, Faith, fear, Growth, Life, Personal, Quotes, Thoughts, Wisdom, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Acquiring some horse sense

source: evans-welsh ponies

Good instincts usually tell you what to do long before your head has it all figured out – Michael Burke

I recently found myself in a situation that made me think of my horse, Riley.

Riley was an Arabian-Welsh cross that Dad bought  for me when I was 9. I’d been riding for several years by then but had never had my own horse.  I rode JJ and Queenie, my cousin’s horses, as often as I could, and our draught horses Tony and Bruce,  but that wasn’t the same as having my own.  When you’re a full-time cowgirl you need a full-time horse! So when Dad asked me if I wanted to go with him to deliver a load of hay, I answered, “sure,” figuring that, at the very least I’d score a pop and some candy. That’s what you get when you take a trip with the Candy Man.

Slipping on my jean jacket and hopping into the truck cab, I didn’t even notice the horse trailer behind us.  Flipping through the AM stations, we shared peppermints and listened to the farm reports.    Arriving at a farm I didn’t recognize, I helped Dad as he offloaded the bales.  I noticed an older man, the farm owner, approach the truck.   I half-listened as they talked about grain costs and hay availability but, truth be told, I wasn’t paying them much attention because it was around that time that I spotted a dark grey horse looking at me intently.  He, with the most beautiful and inquisitive face, stared at me from a cow-filled corral and with cow pies up to his knees.  I abandoned the hay and sloshed through the barnyard muck, my rubber boots making a squirsh squirsh sound as I rushed to meet him.  Slowly and deliberately, he approached the fence but maintained a 3 foot distance from the rails.  Hardly daunted, I scaled the fence and, perched on the top, and reached out my hand so as to pet him. He snorted, stamped a foot, and backed away.

From behind I heard an unfamiliar voice ask, “So I hear you’re in the market for a horse?”

“Huh?” I said, looking in confusion over to my Dad, who stood at the truck grinning.

“What do you think all this hay is for?” giggled Dad.

Still confused, I looked from man to man and realized what was really going on:  they were trading hay for a horse – MINE!

I could hardly stand the ride home and I barely heard Dad as he explained, “You do realize he’s at least 5 years old and not even halter broke yet. He doesn’t know anything. You will need to work with him every day and teach him. You know that, right?”

Did I?

I spent nearly every day with Riley, after school, all weekends and every summer that followed.

So I brushed him. I spoiled him. I told him all my secrets. He greeted me with a nicker , ears up and one step forward, every time.  I laughed at his antics as he stole treats and opened gates for other horses but he’d redeem himself by obediently giving rides to children who visited us.  When he misbehaved, and he often did, I’d have him back up in straight lines. Doing so won us both ribbons at the local 4-H show because, unbeknown-st to me, being able to back up through an L corner was a key part of the “Western Trail” class competition. That horse could back a perfectly straight line the entire length of the arena.

There were many things that he was not: he was not tall and he was not lanky, and that was OK ’cause neither was I.  He was, however, as dignified as an Arabian desert racer could be and as smart, stubborn and dependable as Welsh ponies are known to be. He was perfect for me.

Riley.

He did more than listen: he provided therapy to a girl with a head full of dreams trying to find her place in the world.

He taught me more about trusting my instincts than any person ever has.

Once, on our way home from yet another adventure with the cousins, he kept stopping every 20 feet or so.  Growing impatient, I urged him on. Finally, he stopped firmly, planted his feet, swung his head and bit me on the foot.   He got my attention, and as I spun him around there, about 15 feet directly behind us, was the largest male coyote I’d ever seen.  Clearly Riley had sensed what lurked behind us but could not see it clearly.   The coyote, no threat to us, locked eyes, looked down and loped away.   That day, I learned to listen to what he had to tell me:  I know better than you kid, and you might just want to pay attention.

Me & Riley, 4-H Achievement Day 1979

Me & Riley, 4-H Achievement Day 1979

What brings me to this tale?

A situation presented itself to me recently that just didn’t sit right with me. I tried to brush it off, to no avail. I finally spun around and stared it down for what it was. I recognized it, I dealt with it, and I moved on.

Thank you, Riley, for teaching me to trust what my gut’s telling me long before my head has it figured out.  Thank you for teaching me that it’s perfectly normal to sing into a prairie wind and that gates only exist to be opened.

What have your animals taught you?

*originally posted by Emjayandthem on April 1, 2011

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Categories: Animals, Faith, Family, Friendship, Growth, Joy, Life, Life Lessons, Personal, Relationships, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

What Lingered in Linden

So a road trip yesterday had me stopping for coffee and a bite to eat at the Linden Hotel in S.E. Michigan.

This is an old town, the hotel was established in 1840 and a sign on the front stoop says so.

Known for their home-made goodies and excellent lunches, we were told this would be a good place to stop after a meeting earlier that day.

But what we didn’t know is that the hotel is supposedly haunted.

I noticed something was up right away; having turned my (android) phone off while in meetings, I expected a full charge when I powered it back up.  It was .. and then it wasn’t.  Saying nothing, I watched as two main screen images superimposed themselves over each other.  I also noticed I wasn’t getting my work emails and the time display was stuck on one time.

Making general conversation with the waitress, my colleagues asked about the hotel’s history.  Smiling, she said, “oh, would you like to see our ghost book?”

Immediately one said “no, not me, I’m scared of that stuff.” She replied, “oh you’ll be fine” and stepped away to retrieve a binder filled with photos and anecdotes from previous visitors.

Intrigued, we asked her to tell us more.

“Well, I’ve worked here for many years and often come in to find the silverware upside down or unwrapped.  We’ve had bartenders witness bottles fly off the bar and cooks hear someone call their name.  The most activity is in the upstairs ladies bathroom and in the mens room on this floor.  There’s a little girl here, she died in a fire, she plays upstairs.  The others we aren’t so sure about.”

My colleagues smiled and went back to their food and I looked at my phone again. Nothing. The time was frozen at the time we entered the building: 2:02 pm and the battery was almost dead.

One photo in the book caught us all by surprise, especially when she told us the story behind it.

Apparently a group of local folks who do Civil War reenactments did so on the upper floor of the hotel while it was under renovation.  See the soldier by the chair?  Folks who participated noticed him after the images were developed; no one knows who he is, as every other member was accounted for.

Weird hey?

While the experience was unusual, I can tell you I wasn’t scared. I also don’t mind telling you that  there was no part of me that was going upstairs to the ladies’ room: I trust my intuition!  I had to giggle when my colleagues bade a hasty retreat after they were “visited” by yellow lights in the mens’ room.  Suggestion or real?

I am not sure what to think about all this but I do know this: we were a full 70 miles west of there before my phone returned to normal, the time reset and 67 new emails showed up.

for more, visit  http://www.lindenhotel.com/GhostPage.htm

What do you think?  Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever visited someplace haunted? Were you visited by something while you were there?

related posts by Emjayandthem:

Categories: Faith, Life, Personal, Random observations, Self Discovery, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

Seekers

Have you ever met someone whose personality immediately drew you in? Who, at first glance, seemed like someone you’d like to know better?

Not long ago, this happened to me.

I found myself seated next to another lady while both of us were getting manicures; I couldn’t help but overhear her conversation with another patron. She was articulate and engaging on the topics they discussed (health and health care). When the other lady finished and left, this one turned to me.   For a time, the conversation was pleasant.  Smiling inwardly, I thought, this is fun, because I love to meet and talk with new people.  But it was when she ventured off into alternative care that I felt a smidge of unease.   Bear in mind that I don’t take issue with alternative remedies; I personally think there’s a lot we can learn by going back to the basics – good nutrition, proper sleep, etc.  But, this was  different: I saw her eyes brighten and noted when she licked her lips and leaned in closer, almost conspiratorially.   It hit me that the two-way info exchange had stopped; now she talked at me about energy fields, colon-hydrotherapy and her stance against vaccinations.  Well, “to each his own,” I thought.  A break in the conversation allowed me to sit quietly for a moment and that’s when I heard it, a ringing in my right ear, clear and steady, like an alarm going off.   I smiled while trying to follow her stances on modalities, PH balances and the like.  I found myself a little sad, too, because before me was a woman with a quick and seeking mind.  Before me was not someone seeking conversation or friendship, however: before me was a soul whispering hear me, see me, affirm me.

When it was time to go, she smiled warmly and introduced herself as Jane, slipping her business card into my hand. I smiled back and told her my first name, too, but refrained from sharing my contact information. Instead I minded that little alarm, the one that very clearly said no.

“Intuition is always right in at least two important ways;

It is always in response to something.

It always has your best interest at heart”

― Gavin de Becker, “The Gift of Fear”

Have you ever been in this situation? How did you handle it?

image from Pinterest.com

Categories: Faith, fear, Friendship, Personal, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

on Self-Help

I don’t know about you but I’ve got a fair amount of self-help books sitting around.  I love to read and have always gravitated to topics that cause me to ponder life’s choices and think about what’s next.

But, having said that, there’s a very distinct part of me that is so clearly my mother’s daughter:  she, the  feisty little narrator who lives inside my head and sports cat-eye glasses and pedal pushers.  She snorts and nudges and whispers Balderdash!! whenever Oprah or some other guru-type starts telling me how we should be living.

You know what I’m talking about:  you’ve seen the excitement when “they” are on the precipice of something meaningful.  And sometimes they truly have been. I don’t mean any disrespect but I’ve rolled my eyes more times than not when listening to her.

See if I had O’s bazillions of dollars I’d probably have a monthly magazine with my fine self on it, too. I’d smile and cook with Paula Deen and get tips from Dr. Oz and give advice and tell other people how it’s done .. or not.   Actually, it’s more likely that I’d set down the oven mitts and turn off the fans and look to the camera to say: You know more than you think you do so when that inner voice that we all have picks at you and pulls you back from doing what others think you should, stifle yourself and listen.

* * *

“I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, ‘Where’s the self-help section?’ She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.”
— George Carlin

* * *

How about you?  Do you trust your instincts and heed your own advice?

Categories: Confidence at any age, fear, Fun, Growth, Personal, Relationships, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Seeing the need

So, there we were last Saturday, hubbs and me, seated at a corner table facing the rest of the restaurant as we waited for friends to join us for supper.  A perfect vantage point for people-watching and hubbs could check college basketball scores on the flat screens if he chose to. We chatted back and forth but soon found ourselves paying attention to the next table’s occupants.

We saw them when they first were seated: a young woman, in her thirties I think, and with her, three young boys.  The oldest faced me, his young face kissed by a smattering of freckles.  He was tall and lanky, maybe 10 years old at most.  To his left was his younger brother, who we guessed to be about 7.  The mother had her back to us and to her right was sat the littlest, a cute little boy between 3 and 4.  The boys settled in and seemed happy to be there.  Mom began texting  and perusing her iPad immediately, only raising her head to offer a scolding.  Frequently she left the table and went outside.  We couldn’t help but notice the oldest as he shared his pizza toppings with the littlest , and how he comforted him when asked for Mommy.  Mom came back and forth to the table so many times that we lost count.   A cluster of club-dressed women appeared and we soon learned that these ladies were Mom’s friends; the ones she couldn’t go out with that night because she had the kids.  She said it with such contempt that both hubbs and I recoiled.

It wasn’t long before Mom handed the boys her beloved iPad and let their pizza smeared fingers get busy.   This gave her the opportunity to grab her drink and sneak away to the bar, where she stood with her girlfriends for at least 30 minutes, her back to her children.  When the littlest one scored points on the game, he raised a chubby arm and gave a triumphant cry.  Bar Mom spun and shot a caustic look at the oldest, who clearly was failing the parental responsibilities she’d thrust upon his slim shoulders.

Eventually, and only after settling in the younger two, he warily approached the Mom.  At first, she put her arm around him and smiled as she introduced him to her friends.  But it wasn’t long before she tired of that and turned away from him and back to her friends; he stood where she’d left him, shifting his weight from one foot to another for a tortured forever.

To my right I heard Hubbs deep voice whisper, “You know, I’ve been that kid.  I’ve been that boy trying to get his parents out of the bar; I feel so badly for him.”

There comes a point in circumstances such as this when your heart scrambles to see what you might have missed.

When you hope there’s another truth besides the one being played out in front of you.

There’s comes a point when you realize how it’s possible to feel empathy and anger at the same moment.

There comes a point when you sadly realize that not every child enjoys the luxury of being wanted.

There comes an understanding, too, that there’s little an outsider can do.  We were strangers after all. Stranger danger.

We are parents.

We get it.

It’s demanding, stressful, and sometimes not that rewarding, quite frankly.

Sometimes you need a break.

But here’s the thing, sometimes you don’t get one. Why take it out on the kids?

I heard my mother’s words ringing in my head, “Children don’t ask to be here; the least they deserve is love and attention.”

Creating an opportunity, I walked past their table and, as I passed,  tapped the oldest on the shoulder.  When his brown eyes looked up into mine, I smiled and said warmly, “You sure are a wonderful big brother; what a nice job you’re doing!”   He beamed and shyly said, “Thank you,” and off I went.

Just because he doesn't raise his hand doesn't mean the need isn't there. google.images.com

Coming back a few minutes later, I noticed he’d changed positions and was facing me. And when his eyes locked on mine, I smiled and winked; his grin back told me he understood what I was doing.  Hubbs and I enjoyed several shy smiles cast our way for the rest of the time he sat there.

My efforts felt small and days later, here I am still  thinking about him.  I am thinking of him and hoping those few words of encouragement will sustain him the next time this occurs.

“Children don’t ask to be here; the least they deserve is love and attention.” – my Mom

  * * *

Have you ever found yourself in a similar predicament? 

How did you handle it? or What do you wish you’d done?

 

Categories: Faith, Family, Life, Mom, Personal, Thoughts, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , | 37 Comments

What are you really saying?

There’s always a little truth behind the words “just kidding,”  a little knowledge behind “I don’t know,” a little emotion behind “I don’t care,” and a little pain behind “I’m ok.”

For every time I’ve heard hurtful words followed by “just kidding,”  I know you meant it but don’t have the guts to be honest.

For every time I’ve heard the words “I don’t know” from someone who knows better, I know you’re lying because your eyes are looking everywhere but in mine. 

For every time I’ve heard the words “I don’t care” just know that it’s going to take a few more tries to convince me.  

For every time I’ve heard the words “I’m ok” know that I feel your pain and see you reassuring yourself with those words.

 So .. what are you really saying?

Categories: Determination, Friendship, Life, Opinion, Personal, Quotes, Random, Relationships, Self Discovery, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | 23 Comments

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Happily After Retirement

- Loving where I am right now!

A Little Wild Farm

Planting roots on our little wild farm.

Connie Rosser Riddle

Connecting with People in My Path

Atypical 60

A Typical Blog. A Typical Woman. A Typical Take On Life. With An Atypical Twist!

A New Day Dawns

Arise, shine, for your light has come...Isaiah 60

Virginia Views

Country Living for Beginners

Views and Mews by Coffee Kat

Kate's views on life edited by four opinionated cats

Renee Johnson Writes

Novelist, Traveler, and More

Life Is A Journey... Not A Guided Tour

My Journey From Merchant Mariner to Mother, And Spiritual Being.

notquiteold

Nancy Roman

She's A Maineiac

just another plaid-wearin' java-sippin' girl

I also live on a farm

Just another WordPress.com weblog

Wordsmith's Desk

some thoughts along the way

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

music, poetry, musings, photography and philosophy from a woman who found her way back home and wants you to come over for a hike and a cocktail.

these days of mine

Stop in and see what's happening during these days of mine

When I Ride...

How life coaches me as I ride...

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