When I think of my boy, Bandit, who we lost this day last week (15th February 2023), and seek to feel our shared love again, the words ‘Live and Let Live’ keep coming to me.
As these words whirl about in my head, I am trying to figure out what they feel like for me:
“To Let Live”
To live, for me, I suppose, is the easiest one to feel. It is about putting my heart into everything I do, loving it as I loved Bandit, whatever it may be. And when I felt this most, was a few days before we let Bandit go. I sensed him as two separate beings.
Timmy had shown me this before, for different reasons, but it is all a learning. Experience it when you are at peace, so you know what it is when you see it again. That was when I knew it was time to let him go. Every step of the next few days I had to do from a place of peace, finding my inner peace, and then doing what needed to be done, from telling my husband, to making arrangements, saying goodbye, and burying him.
This taught me something deep. To live is to be at peace with everything, whatever it is. To live wholeheartedly as Bandit did, despite his body.
To Let Live. This is a deeper learning curve. It means, for me, a few things:
“To embrace the lives of others wholeheartedly”;
“To let lives happen as they will, not as I think they should”;
“To give help where it is asked for, to the best of my ability”; and
“To know that that will be enough”.
And all of that means embracing everything available to me. Not limiting myself or others, and not putting unnecessary boundaries in place.
Interestingly, this has fed into how, as we come into the spring season, I help my laminitics this year. I have changed a lot over winter, enhancing the track, and putting in poles for hanging hay nets and licks around the track to get them moving more, putting herbs and oils out for self-selection for pain relief, and so on.
But, something came to me in the last couple of weeks that I probably would have dismissed outright a year ago – laminitis shoes. Not boots. Boots we have done. They are great, until the sensitivity means that they don’t want lift a foot to put more weight on another foot. The farrier can get the trims done, but with me they will say no. Also, the shoes that will be fitted will be plastic. Again something I have been trying to cut down on, like most of us, but they are more flexible than metal and better for the joints. My farrier and I have discussed it, and we are going to try them out this year. We will embrace this as part of our goal “To Let Live”. Walking without pain, or less pain, is living, whatever that relief looks like.
Embracing what is available to us, and taking it when it is needed, is living wholeheartedly.
Taking it just because it is there, or because it falls within the boundaries we have unwittingly set ourselves, is not living wholeheartedly, it is living within a set of rules based on what we have learnt in the past and set in stone for ourselves.
What is right for me today won’t be right for you today.
What is right for you today, won’t be right for me today, but it may be right for me tomorrow. Dismiss nothing. Embrace everything.
To Live and Let Live
- Drop all self-limiting beliefs
- Help from a place of peace
- Live each moment, whatever that moment holds
- Love wholeheartedly
It only took me 56 years to figure that out. Now I need to live the next 56 years with the enthusiasm of a 17 year old, despite the body of a 57 year old!
I hope I can do you proud Bandit. We miss you deeply.