“Accept Other’s for Who They Are”
I have a tendency to want situations to go in a certain direction. I admit, I like to control outcomes. Allowing things to be what they are and not pushing, coercing, or manipulating my agenda is a new practice for me. I’ve had lots of opportunities to accept people and situations for what they are, but I’m a slow learner. William has supported my education in this area...
William turned around, ignoring my calls. It was too dam cold for a walk he grunted. I hoped he’d change his mind. I continued a slow meander along the wood trail with a bouncy goat climbing the fallen trees like an Olympic gymnast. I called periodically trying to coax the pig, “Come on, Come on, Come on.”
Greg, the cat and the chicken sister's started to follow at first, but all abandoned the idea. It was cold and windy. It was just Molly Marie and me today. The goat was ready to do something, anything really, as she becomes bored with William’s long periods of hibernation in cold weather.
The farther we walked away from the garage and William though, the less enthusiastic Molly became. Her comfort is in being a herd and although Molly sees me as the lead goat, William is also an important member. Like a deer, alert, listening for danger, Molly paused, raised her head and scoped out the area craning her neck towards the path behind us. She was apprehensive without the pig. Her alliance was torn.
I thought about returning back to the garage and directing William to come for the walk. That’s what you do with dogs anyways. You have them come when you say, “Come”. But my relationship with the pig has developed differently.
William is an intelligent, sensitive animal. He taught me that forcing your will on another being causes distrust and trauma. In order to get William’s trust and cooperation, he needs to willingly participate in activities.
I learned this when William was two months old. I had attempted to put a harness on the piggy and lead him with a leash. My agenda was to leash train William, like the pigs on the internet and then have him visit my mother in the nursing home. This, in my mind, would make my mother happy.
With as much patience as I could muster, I cleverly got the harness on the pig a few times, using lots of treats. Even with treats William was very hesitant with the idea. I got the harness on and off a couple times a day for several days, then I went to adding the leash. I got away with walking him a bit with a leash when traversing the driveway until the day William wanted to go a different direction and he was halted with a tug. That‘s the day I found that pigs can jump straight up and their screams can make your ears want to bleed. He fought and screamed for only seconds, wiggling himself out of the harness and rushing away from me quickly. He was traumatized! It took days for him to recover any small amount of trust in me.
If William could of spoke then, he would of asked, “Why? Why would you tie me up? Isn’t it enough that I come when I’m called and walk with you and Walter? Now you want to tie me up and drag me?”
I was crushed!
I was horrified at what I had done to William, my piggy. I was back to square one as far as trust with him went. Then, when I thought of my intention with the pig, I became disappointed that my pig would not be prancing into the nursing home on a leash, making my mother and her resident friends smile.
It became obvious to me that when I got William, I had put expectations on him. I had thought I’d make him into one of those cutsey facebook pigs that were all cool with acting like dogs. He’d be a show piggy at the nursing home!
But that’s not the pig I got. I had a smart and friendly pig that had autonomy the size of a Great Dane. William knew who he was and didn’t like to be pushed into doing anything cutsey.
Once he got over the trauma and was ready to listen, I apologized to my piggy several times for my behavior. As goofy as it sounds I sat next to William, feeding him his favorite treats, Charlie Bears , explaining what had caused me to do what I had done. I shared my grand plan of him visiting the nursing home. In hind sight, since I was going to end up talking with a pig anyways, I probably should have talked to him about it before I scared him half to death. Perhaps the whole thing would of went differently.
Yep, communication is important!
I remember his response clearly.
“Karen, I’m no show pony, “he said. “Bring your mother here to meet me and I’ll be a good piggy. But don’t treat me like that ever again!”
It was then that I accepted William for who he was and released my projection of what having a pig, like William, would look like. I learned that William was an individual, and he had preferences.
When I embraced the truth William shared and decided I’d rather have a pig who feels safe, loved and respected then a show pony, no disrespect to the show pony piggies on facebook, our relationship has become deeper.
I allow William to choose what he wants to do with most things, except no going to visit the neighbor’s horses or the other neighbor’s garden. He’s pretty good about it, only pushing those limits about once or twice a year.
Each time I go for a walk, I invite William to come along, calling his name and then announcing what I’m doing, then allow, if he chooses to follow along, it’s wonderful! I feel blessed. If he chooses not to, I sit with accepting his choice.
So, for this day, William had said, “No” to the walk. Molly and I took the side trail back around to the apple tree on the west side of the house cutting the walk short. I called out to William letting him know we we’re returning. Molly rushed to the yard calling out to her friend with goat bleats. William, hearing us, peeked around the corner of the house to meet us.
We returned to the heated garage as a unit. The chickens followed us in. I gave the entourage some corn for a treat.
Having William in my life has turned into a practice of releasing control of outcomes and accepting others for who they are.
Crow Moon Healing Bed and Breakfast is all about "Accepting Others."
Upcoming Events at Crow Moon Healing Bed and Breakfast
1) "Connecting with Divine Spirit through Shamanism"
A two-day basic shamanism workshop led by Debra Morrill
January 5th and 6th 2019
Saturday, January 5th from 9am-9pm
Sunday, January 6th from 9am- 4pm
From the beginning of time, indigenous cultures on every continent shared a shamanic spiritual view. Our forebears lived close to the earth, deeply in tune with her cycles and seasons, the elements and nature. In this connection, they found their spirituality. They believed that every living being had a spirit- not just people, but also animals, trees, stones, and plants. They commonly traveled into the spirit realm to communicate and interact with power animals, spirit guides and nature spirits. Through exploring the basics of shamanism, we can rekindle our connection to the divine and develop our ability to communicate directly with Spirit to receive guidance on our spiritual path.
In this two-day experiential workshop, you will:
Debra Morrill, B.A., has a shamanic healing practice in Prairie du Sac, Wi. She specializes in compassionate repossession, ancestral healing and curse unraveling. She leads a six-month ancestral healing circle and a two-year shamanic training program. Visit her website at debramorrill.com for more information about shamanism, spirituality and personal healing.
Cost for the two-day basic shamanism workshop:
$330 with early registration by December 28th OR- $375 after December 28. Meals included in the workshop fee: snacks, lunch on Saturday, breakfast on Sunday and lunch on Sunday. Healthy and delicious food is served, with gluten-free options. Dinner on Saturday evening is potluck style before the evening fire ceremony and celebration. Basic lodging is available at Crow Moon Healing for no extra charge. There are a variety of beds, air mattresses and sofas available. Or bring a tent and camp.
Registration or more information:
Contact Debra Morrill at 608-279-4319 or email email@example.com.
2) NEXT 2.5 YEAR SHAMANIC MEDICINE WHEEL/TRAINING PROGRAM BEGINS FEBRUARY 2019
The Shamanic Path: a 2.5-year shamanic medicine wheel and training
program based on core shamanic healing techniques led by Debra Morrill
Begins February 1-3, 2019, and meets one weekend every three months
Begins Friday evening at 7 pm and runs through Sunday afternoon at 4 pm
Crow Moon Healing • a spiritual B&B located in rural Sauk City, WI
"The Shamanic Path" is a 2.5-year medicine wheel program combining personal healing work and training in core shamanic healing techniques. It brings about lasting growth and personal transformation. It is designed for:
* those who want to use shamanic techniques for their personal healing journey
* those who are drawn to shamanism to deepen their connection with Spirit
* those who wish to begin a shamanic healing practice (formal or informal) or to fold shamanic healing techniques into an existing alternative health practice (such as massage or reiki)
Walking the medicine wheel is a way of shedding old patterns and beliefs that no longer serve us. When the unhealed wounds of the past are brought out into the light for healing, deep transformation results. In doing this work, we embody more of our True Self. Shamans are often referred to as "wounded healers." In combining a training program along with personal healing work, we make medicine out of our past. Healing ourselves restores harmony to our being, allows us to practice the work with integrity and compassion, and prepares us for being of service to others.
"The Shamanic Path" training program meets 10 weekends over 2.5 years - one weekend every three months. It begins February 1-3, 2019, and takes place at Crow Moon Healing Bed & Breakfast in rural Sauk City, WI. The base price of each weekend is $440 (which includes lodging and breakfast). Each weekend begins Friday evening with opening circle at 7 pm and runs through Sunday afternoon with closing circle at 4 pm.
This training program is appropriate for intermediate experience levels. Some pre-requisites are required, such as the ability to receive information during shamanic journeys and prior attendance at a two-day basic shamanism workshop.
There is a practicum option available for participants who wish to go into shamanic practice working directly with clients.
For more information about "The Shamanic Path" medicine wheel/training program beginning in February 2019, please request a brochure by replying to this email with your physical mailing address.
The registration process includes filling out an application and having a 30-minute phone interview. If you are interested in participating in the “The Shamanic Path” 2.5-year program, please let me know of your interest. To register or for more information, please contact Debra Morrill at 608-279-4319 or firstname.lastname@example.org.