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One of the true gifts of sharing your life with an animal is the way they model for you how to be present to your own life.

Animals are masters at living in the moment.

They aren’t multi-tasking, or making to-do lists, or missing out on a glorious sunset because they’re replaying that conversation with the boss. They are front and center for the sunset, the freezing wind, the fresh green grass, the herd politics – front and center for their lives.

Their here and now, in the moment, all -we- have, lives.

 

Over the years that I’ve spent with our two old sweeties and their pals, the Herd of Oldsters, I’ve noticed that when I simply allow myself to be with the horses at the pasture and let go of everything else that usually clutters my mind, I come away more grounded, more relaxed, and more present to the rest of my life that day.

It’s a powerful experience.

And one for which I am so very grateful to have had these two wise old teachers.

 

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Rick and I have done our darndest to be with our animals and have no regrets.

So now as we look back at Bud’s life, we are able to say, “Yes. There are no regrets.”

And I’m telling you, it feels good.

We did right by him. Took good care of him. Let him be a horse.

We’re big fans of pasture living for horses and for the majority of his life, we gave that opportunity to Bud. He got to graze when he wanted, spend his time in a herd, cavort and run, feel the wind in his face. And yes, he ran into some unpleasant situations now and then, but that’s the life of horses in the wild. And that’s what we wanted for him.

 

So no regrets.

And now as we close this chapter of our time with Bud, we comfort ourselves with the thousands of wonderful memories we have.

He was a horse of great heart – all try. He had that Appaloosa stubborn streak that worked both for and against him at times. But he was the one we trusted to give a first ride to toddlers and new wary riders because he was steady and sure. He was as “bomb proof” as any horse can be.

 

Rick and Bud had a special bond. Rick could always comfort him, calm him, help him settle when he needed to. And I think he did the same for Rick.

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Even at the end, when Rick arrived and knelt beside him, Bud relaxed. He died with his head in Rick’s lap.

No regrets.

 

Farewell sweet boy. May you spend the rest of your days with the wind in your face, the sun on your back in a pasture of knee-high sweet green grass.

 

We are all better having known you.

“The days are long, but the years are short.”

~Gretchen Rubin

The Happiness Project

Life hurtles by us at speeds mere humans cannot even begin to comprehend. All I have to do is look at my son, now a father, to get the full impact of how quickly life moves.

I still feel him in my heart as a boy, playing with Matchbox cars or heading out of the house with a skateboard tucked under his arm. Now instead of a skateboard, he leaves carrying a laptop, smart phone and diaper bag.

 

Where does the time go? I’ve pondered this question before on this blog and in my head. Many times.

The conclusion I’ve reached is this:

The best way to deal with the passing of time is to live each moment as fully as possible.

I am learning to be present in my life – all of my life. So if I’m feeling sad, I let myself be sad. No beating myself up, or shoulding myself out of it. Sad is sad.

The same goes for feeling happy. Happy is happy and I want to soak up and enjoy every morsel of happiness.

And the myriad feelings in between.

I want to live my life in real time.

I want to be fully present with the people and animals and events that are with me in that particular moment.

No more worrying about the future, over which I have minimal control.

No more wallowing in the past, which I cannot change.

It’s a tall order for someone who lives quite comfortably in her head.

But this is my intention and I’m putting it down here in black and white, with you as witnesses to hold me accountable.

I don’t want to miss even a moment of my life.

And I want no regrets, or at least as few as possible, given that I am perfectly imperfect.

Whaddya say?

Join me if you if you’re so inclined, on the amazing journey of being present in our lives.

Let’s embrace all of life Clint Eastwood style: the good, the bad and even the ugly!

Fully present – no regrets!

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