The Beginning of Diana’s Bach Flower Journey:
How the Flower Essence Rock Rose Rescued Timothy
The Thoroughbred racehorse Timothy’s Hope was my primary equine teacher during 1985-1988 and 2003-2012. During our first year together he showed me the miraculous nature of the flower essences discovered by Dr. Edward Bach.
Timothy experienced considerable trauma during his early years at the racetrack. He had declined to the point where he had been ruled off the tracks for refusing to break out of the starting gate. In the spring of 1985 I worked with the physically sore, emotionally ragged horse at my farm in Oregon to bring him back to health. I used nutrition, massage and fitness work. Timothy responded beautifully, gaining fitness, condition and peace of mind. I rode him in my farm arena and at the beach, where we galloped along the sand and waded in the Pacific Ocean. When I moved him to a small county fair race track in the summer of 1985 for schooling, however, he became quite emotionally and physically troubled.
I moved Timothy to the facility with several of his horse friends. Being off-season, the grounds were quiet. There were only 20 to 30 horses stabled throughout a large number of barns. No loudspeaker, official morning workouts or the hustle bustle of race days existed to interrupt our leisurely routine. I thought it would be a perfect place to reintroduce Timothy to easy workouts on a real track.
Track Environment Causes Panic
Regardless of my thoughts on the subject, Timothy responded poorly. Within a day, he was so fussy he was drinking and eating only half of his normal amounts. He started suffering mild muscle cramping and constipation. In addition to these physical concerns, Timothy became increasingly emotionally unstable. He was unable to relax even when offered green grass and turnout time in a paddock. He couldn’t settle down for an evening walk with a good horse friend or a gentle massage. In the morning, when being saddled for his morning workout, Timothy would stand locked in one place in the stall, shivering and shaking, unable to move. He was literally frozen in place with fear. It would take me 15 to 20 minutes to coax him out of the stall. After returning from the track following a mild walk, trot and canter workout with a calm horse friend, Timothy was so nervous he would start to stiffen up and look as if he was going to tie up or colic.
Bach Flower Solution
Concerned for Timothy’s health, I contacted my veterinarian, holistic practitioner Dr. Bob Anderson of Dallas, Oregon. I asked Dr. Bob to give me some kind of chemical tranquilizer for Timothy. I had never used this sort of thing in my training practice before but felt if we didn’t do something to calm Timothy’s nerves he was going to become very ill. Dr. Bob refused my request. Instead, he handed me a brown one-ounce dropper bottle filled with what looked like water. The bottle was labeled “Rock Rose.” Dr. Bob instructed me to put one dropperful of the liquid onto Timothy’s tongue every hour for the rest of the day.
I was very skeptical about this idea, but trusted Dr. Bob and did as I was told. Timothy was put to bed in a clean stall with several choices of hay and two large buckets of water. The next morning, the change was obvious. The gelding had eaten every bit of hay and drank almost all the water. He had passed numerous piles of manure and from the straw entwined throughout his mane and tail, it appeared he had spent a great deal of the night down in the straw resting. For the first time since arriving at the facility, Timothy was eager for breakfast and much easier to saddle and take to the track for a walk and jog. The disconnected look in his eyes had shifted to a more present, settled state. With continued use of the formula over the next few days, Timothy’s pre-and post-workout shivering and cramping and his inability to relax in the track environment disappeared.
The liquid in the brown dropper bottle Dr. Anderson gave me was water and Rock Rose, one of the twelve flower essences Dr. Bach had designated as a Twelve Healer. Dr. Bach called Rock Rose the rescue remedy. It helps rebalance deep fears, terror and severe panic. It creates the positive virtues of courage and peace when a horse or person is faced with challenges. Rock Rose is one of the five essences Dr. Bach included in the combination formula he developed and called rescue remedy.
Profound Change Leads to Help for Others
Watching Timothy shift literally overnight sent me on a quest to learn more about Dr. Bach and the flower essences he discovered. Since that day almost 27 years ago, I’ve used the essences to calm frightened and injured animals, lift the spirits of abused or sick horses, build confidence in the performance horse and tone down belligerent pasture bullies. I’ve mixed formulas that help horses (and their owners) cope with allergies, the fear of trailer loading and stage fright during competition. The essences helped an orphan foal move out of depression and an older horse reclaim his place in the herd.
I’ve used Bach’s essences to calm myself after stressful days, injuries and the death of beloved people and animals. Injured cats, dogs and horses, birds in shock, panicked children on airplanes and troubled friends have all benefitted from Timothy leading me to learn about the essences.
Essences Help Heal Physical Injuries
While they are known to help with emotional stress, the essences are often the key to resolving a lingering physical problem. For instance, if a horse is chronically fearful or angry he will physically tense his muscles and move with short choppy strides. This physical tension interferes with the horse’s coordination and leaves him vulnerable to injury. The ongoing tension also keeps undoing the benefits of massage, acupressure and other body therapies. In many cases, once the correct flower essence is administered the horse’s emotional reactivity settles down and the physical issues will resolve.
So whether you are a one-horse owner, professional equine body worker, veterinarian, trainer or farrier, I recommend you give the flowers essences discovered by Dr. Bach a try. The people and horses in your life will benefit greatly from this gentle gift from nature.
In addition to thanking Timothy and Dr. Bob Anderson for introducing me to the world of Dr. Bach and flower essences, I wish to thank another holistic veterinarian Dr. Stephen Blake of San Diego, California, for furthering my knowledge and confidence in the use of their use.
Finally, I wish to thank and give extensive credit for my abilities with the flowers to a fine human being and inspirational teacher, the late Jessica Bear, Ph.D. N.D., of Las Vegas, Nevada. Jessica’s books, courses, private teachings and personal encouragement gave me the tools and support to experiment with the essences with the horses in my care. The material presented here is primarily gleaned from the time I spent studying with Jessica, her books (see the Resources section) and my personal experience using the essences during the past 27 years.