“Don’t Push The River”

“Don’t Push The River”

“Don’t push the river, it flows by itself.”
Fritz Perls
I have just returned from an extremely transformative weekend, courtesy of the Pennsylvania Gestalt Institute. It came at the perfect time…I had just lost my dear friend of over 39 years, Sally Winckelman, who passed due to cancer. Sally was tough, abrasive at times, but a dear friend and mentor. She was a Mother to me as well as to countless others. Her involvement with Pennsylvania 4-H was legendary…I think it spanned over 50 years!

Sally at Over the Hill Horse Show

We had years and years of attending Timonium Horse Sales together, where I was learning how to trust my intuition when buying, and she was right by my side. She was with me when I bought almost all of my pivotal horses–“Spank” as well as “Viton.” The only one she did not see at first was Coffee. I bought him home, and I recall riding him when she first came to see him. There she was, in the center of the arena, as I put him through his paces. And she watched. And watched. I waited for her to say something (oftentimes negative-that was Sally)–but nary a word was spoken. And, at that moment, I realized life had changed. I had finally arrived, where I could, and did, pick out an exquisite animal. I have had judges tell me that Coffee is a “million dollar horse.” And, they are correct. His versatility-halter, english, western, is a delight to all who have the honor of showing him. His sensibility on the trail is legendary. I am so grateful he is still with me today.
When Sally was still alive, I often thought of her and her life as a template for mine. There she was, with her small adorable barn in Malvern. She had a boarder, whom she eventually let go. Then, she stopped showing her horse. Then, she stopped riding her horse. Then, she had to re-home her horse, she could not longer offer him the daily care needed. Then, she lost her dog. And, with each loss, I watched. And supported her. Knowing that one day, soon, this would be my story, as well.
I try not to think of it often, but I know it is true-everyone we love we will lose to death or separation. It makes each day and each connection, a deep connection, all the more worthwhile.
Which brings me back to the beginning…spending a weekend with a community of folks who are all different, all with powerful stories of their own. All meeting together to connect, to heal, to become whole. I was honored to be a part of it. Sally would have approved!
May you find a circle, a tribe, a community which adores you. And then, may you stay with it, and be with it, often. As you know, horses live in herds. They know what it takes to survive and thrive. May you do the same! Here at The Resonant Horse, we are honored to be a part of YOUR thriving!!
Our first horse circle is April 20th, from 2:00-3:30. Our spring all day workshop is April 27th. We still have some slots open for it!! Contact Mindy or Susan today!!!

Mindy Chernoff
Mindy Chernoff
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