On Sep 17th and 18th, I attended a workshop called "Way of the Horse", held at Generation Farms in Nanaimo, B.C. This beautiful farm is on Vancouver Island, and including the 2 hour ferry ride, it's about 7 hours travel time from my home. However, this captivating workshop was definitely worth the travel!
I had been corresponding with Deborah Marshall, the workshop facilitator since spring of this year. Actually, to be accurate I had contacted Deborah even before then, almost 2 years ago to the month. I had the intention to make it to her workshop but had things come up. When I finally realized my goal to participate this year, I was ecstatic!
The workshop is based on the Epona approach, which was founded by Linda Kohanov. This workshop was both educational and experiential. We started in a workshop room to get to know each other, but then moved outside to play with the horses. I will never forget the music that was played for us, with lively sounds of horses whinnying and running. We explored our emotions and feelings, our intentions for being at the workshop. We got to share and learn from each other, and also how to interpret the horses', and our own feelings. We met the horses, and allowed magic to happen. The horses welcomed us and seemed to speak to us in different ways. Each horse had a message, if we listened closely we could find out what these were.
In a roundpen exercise, we learned to stand with the horses, allow them to come to us, or not if they chose not to engage. I remember feeling touched by the horses intuitive ways. There were two horses I definitely had a deep "aha!" experience with. It was special and yet difficult to put into words what I experienced. Throughout the workshop, I felt very supported and engaged by Deborah, and her daughter Emily who co-facilitated the workshop.
The end of the two day workshop came all too quickly. We had a great ending session for closure, including a reflection and goal setting.
I can't wait to use all of what I learned with my own horses and clients!
Picture (left) below is of Deborah's daughter Emily on horse Morgana, next to Deborah and me. Picture on the right is of Deborah and Emily during the closing exercise. For further information, you can visit Deborah's website at www.generationfarms.ca