The past two years have been difficult. Without doubt it has been an unprecedented time of separation. In 2020, the pandemic kept many of us from our family, friends and workplace. Those who lost a loved one suffer the greatest separation as they search for meaning in that loss. While we are almost back to some degree of normal, the pandemic continues to complicate our daily lives.
Political divisiveness has reached an alarming level. Battle lines have been drawn which pit neighbor against neighbor. The dialogue has become so sharp and our triggers so sensitive, that it seems we are constantly being driven by fear and anger. It is this fear and anger that separates us. We have stopped listening to each other and to our better angels. And yet, as human beings we crave connection.
Hidden Acres Farm has been alive for 100 years. It is a testament to resilience. Through any number of tumultuous periods in history, the farm endures. In the rhythm of the farm there is serenity. The daily repetition of barn chores and horse care is satisfying to the soul. It is predictable and necessary. You can almost feel the slow and steady heartbeat that drives the change of seasons, the growth of plants, the movement of the animals in our woods. Even in times of hardship, the trees still tower over us, the streams flow, the fox and red tail hawks visit, and the horses graze peacefully in the fields.
The farm is an oasis in a world that can seem overwhelming. The community wellness and therapeutic riding programs we offer at Hidden Acres encourage connection -to the horses, to the environment and to each other – a connection we are desperately in need of these days. We encourage our participants to set aside the messages that bombard us in our daily lives and to focus on being fully present.
Solstice is a time of peaceful introspection. It is an invitation to quiet our spirit and observe. Looking within allows us to identify the thoughts that are not serving us, like anger, fear and worry about the future. Solstice also creates a space for us to rediscover that which nurtures us. Tuning into the peace and beauty which surrounds us, we can unearth the enduring qualities that are present within us all: love, patience, kindness, creativity. It awakens our innate curiosity about the world.
It is natural and necessary to build connection. It is the root of resilience. When we embrace resilience, our strength fosters hope for the future.
Let this solstice celebration allow us to nurture the roots of our resiliance and move forward with hope.