How does hippotherapy fit in with women experiencing chronic pain?

Some of you may wonder why I’m sharing the progress of the Brown Pony Series on a blog devoted to women and chronic pain! Trust me, there is a connection. And it’s not what may initially come to mind – horses helping women work through pain. Although I see the immense possibilities in that partnership, this is much more personal.

My dream vocation was fulfilled for the past 20 years as I partnered horses and kids with disabilities in the hippotherapy arena. Hippotherapy was central and all other treatment modalities that I was certified in, such as therapeutic listening and myofascial release, were peripheral adjuncts to helping the kids get the most out of hippotherapy.

But hippotherapy includes walking along side the horse in a sand arena (about one mile each treatment session) with me twisting my body to assist and position the kids. Over time, the miles and miles of a twisted body posture led to my own chronic pain diagnosis and the shattering of an investment of love and many hours of education in pursuit of my hippotherapy dream career.

2013, the year of my chronic pain diagnosis, was a year of chaos and emotional turmoil. My heart did not want change but my body insisted on it.

I knew there were other women out there, who have given until their body breaks too and so I decided to re-focus my career and re-envision my life’s purpose to serving the needs of women experiencing chronic pain.

But it’s not easy letting go of a cherished past. It’s like a death. How do you memorialize all those precious memories? The Brown Pony Series is the answer to that question. I am “pouring out” all the hippotherapy experience and knowledge I have gained in the past 20 years and sharing it with others as a means of putting a respectful closure on that chapter of my life.

Is there some area in your life that needs closure?  What will you do to “cherish the memory” of the good that you need to let go of …

 

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