Friday, July 17, 2015

Day 83: Playfulness | Gifts from Animals - Dogs

When I first arrived on the Desteni Farm, I was pretty much a ball of anxiety.

I always dreaded group settings and preferred to be on my own. Now I was stuck in a place with lots of people where there was virtually no moment alone (this was mostly due to space constriction and lots of visitors sharing a single room; since then many more rooms have been built). I was very far away from home and my comfort zone. While I wanted to be on the farm and push through my barriers of resistance, my actual state of mind did not reflect this intention as I was still dealing with a lot of emotional issues that I had been carrying around most of my life.

I remember being very nervous meeting everyone and worrying what people will think of me. One of the first things that happened as we got to the farm was being introduced to the dogs. Lucy and Grace were a lot younger back then and had a lot more ‘puppy-crazy’ in them than they do now; so when they first saw me they both jumped on me, where I fell on the floor and they went berserk on my face with licking. I couldn’t help but laugh and giggle!

Their timing couldn’t have been better because in that moment I had been so tensed up and rigid, worrying about all kinds of things – them jumping and love-pouring on my face snapped me right out of my mind and into my body.

During my first two-month visit, the dogs kept representing that point of support for me – to just be here, play, have fun and relax. No matter what I was going through or how bad things seemed in my mind, there was always a dog nearby looking for someone to play and entertain them. They didn’t care that I thought all doom was upon me, or that I believed I was never going to get through a particular point – they’d just look at you with their big brown eyes and wiggle their tail and you’d have no choice but to level with them and play. And they were right in not caring or paying attention to what I was going through, because from a physical perspective it didn’t matter. From a physical perspective I was on a farm, where everything was pretty relaxed, people just going about their days, animals going about their day – physically, nothing threatening was going on. Everything I was experiencing and going through, was in my head only. And that moment they look at you with that invite to play; you realise the physical aspect of what’s here – how the birds are just chirping along, how you’re in a big wide space in nature, how all there is, is just this moment. And so you join in to that physical moment, pick up a ball and make use of the physical environment that’s here and have some fun.

In my next blog I will share how this point of playfulness has assisted me in my relationship and walking with Cesar.

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