Aella's Heart Equine Facilitation and Sanctuary


Contrary to popular belief, I was not always horse-crazy. About the time I was approaching 30 and following my then 6 year old horse-crazy daughter around during her once a week lessons, it hit me. It wasn’t long after my first exhilarating ride that I came to realize I “needed” horses in my life. The house in the city was sold, we moved out to what I could safely transition to “country” (a half-acre in an equestrian/golf community”) and lo and behold, if you put up a coral, they will come. And they haven’t stopped. As one horse led to another, the horses finally got through to my NOT horse-crazy husband, that we needed more room. And this is where my vision began to unfold.

It was through Chanel (a horse with bone cancer) and Koi (a black lab hit by a car) that my journey with healing began through Reiki. Pursuing a journey of my own self-discovery and awareness of what my up until then life had been about, and then to expand on the possibility that horses and other animals have healing paths of their own, was even more intriguing to me. My herd continued to grow with horses coming to me with physical and emotional traumas. It amazed me how quickly they continued to not only trust and accept humans, but to adjust and thrive in their new herd and live in balance and harmony, despite their past traumas and life stories.

Right about the time that Aella came into my life, I was ready for something new. Our children had left the nest years ago and my husband and I were finally putting the finishing touches on our home that had been destroyed in the 2007 Witchcreek wildland fire here in Southern California. It was time to move on to whatever is “next.” With a few of the horses here now retired from riding, I became more aware of my own longing for a purpose. Years ago, I had read Linda Kohanov’s
The Tao of Equus and then Riding Between the Worlds, as well as a shelf full of other books about horses helping humans to heal, and I was fascinated. I certainly had my own stories of horses and healing, theirs and mine, and as I started collecting a second copy of these favorite books it occurred to me, or maybe I was ready to listen, that this is “it.” This is a way for us to share the wisdom of our journey and a way for the horses here to have a purpose once again helping humans, not from their back. My own journey of raising a family, maintaining a career as a legal assistant and pursuing my dream of a horse ranch, quickly shifted one windy afternoon as the flames of that wildfire cleared the slate, literally. A new perspective in the ash appeared after we returned to the property with the horses, who upon seeing a full water trough and piles of fresh hay, were quite content to eat, sleep and wander the property just as they had only a week before. This perspective of what was really important in life, what my priorities had become, now came full circle.

And so a new journey begins...
Aella had finally weaned her foal (and Maya’s foal whom she had adopted and was also nursing) and so it was time for her to discover what her new career would be. She was obviously a wonderful mama; but as with puppies and kittens, there are far too many unwanted foals and talented horses euthanized to justify allowing her to continue being a broodmare. As she became more accustomed to and friendlier with boarders, friends and family coming out to greet her, I began to notice a pattern. There was definitely something about her, about the way she looked at people, how (despite her ex-large 1,600 pound size) she had her way of snuggling up to people, her feminine energy, her way of putting her head on your chest; you couldn’t help wanting to cry. It quickly became clear to me that there was definitely a mutual healing going on between her and the humans who interacted with her. So I began to search for ways I could help Aella and the people whose heart she had touched. I came upon another book, written by Kathy Pike, called
Hope...From the Heart of Horses. I was inspired, to say the least. Before I even finished reading her book, I was on her website and then interviewing to Apprentice in her year long Instructor Certification Program. And so here is My Journey. At 50 years old, I’m fulfilling my heart’s desire. I am able to now fully embrace this vision I have had for many years of facilitating humans and horses to expand what their full potential is, to help them see what life has to offer and how to get on the path of their heart’s desire.

The horses and I are very excited to be able to be of service to humanity in this phase of history as more and more people are seeking once again to connect with nature. To be grounded and centered in loving and supportive families and building authentic communities where we can continue to grow and thrive. As I look now at my life, where I’ve been and what is possible, I have tools to work with and of course, the wisdom of horse now in my heart and literally out my back door to support and guide me.

Join us on this journey,

Rita Bledsoe

-Approved Certified Instructor, Coaching With Horses
-Life Coach
-Reiki Master
-Craniosacral practitioner