When I got back from riding Chloe today, I went to visit with the donkeys. Something spooked Lulu, but Fanny came up to me and started sniffing me. I squatted next to her and I could feel her breath on my skin as she smelled my hands and arms and face. I pulled up images in my mind from the time I spent with Chloe just a half hour before. Then I imagined Chloe in our pasture grazing with the donkeys and sheep.
I’ve been doing this, trying to tell Fanny and Lulu that Chloe is coming to live with us.
Eventually Lulu came back and the three of us hung around together for a while. I feel like my riding lessons with Chloe has changed the way I am around the donkeys. I’m more confident, but also more loving. I’ll wrap my arms around their necks and give them a hug or rest my body across their backs. They haven’t always been so receptive to such physical gestures, but I think they’re getting used to it. Because the more I do it, the more they tolerate it. And I don’t feel rejected, like I used to, when they walk away from my hugs. I don’t give up. I’m more patient with them and just try again or let them go depending on what feels right.