Catriona has always felt most content when outside, surrounded by animals. She counts many animals both wild and supposedly domesticated, a good number of rocks, trees, flowers and the Nevern River amongst her family and neighbours. Since beginning to encounter the disconnection between humans and the more-than-human life in her animal osteopathy practice more than three decades ago, she began to uncover and develop a practical methodology for remembering her own kinship with life in its many forms. Sharing this with others is the work of her heart.
After qualifying as an osteopath in 1989, her love for all beings feathered and furred, led her to the beginning of a movement that has brought holistic healthcare into the main stream of our connections with the animal kingdom. As a pioneer of cranial osteopathy with animals, with no direct teacher or peers, it was the animals that showed Catriona how to connect with the wild intelligence in the heart of this world. This was a process of developing our natural human intuitive and empathic ability, so that she would know not only what ailed her animal patients, but understand most fully how to help them. Establishing trust in the relationships with the animals when they had experienced trauma, became vital for the effectiveness of the therapeutic interventions she was offering.
Bringing the animals and their human family into closer understanding was the longing at the heart of her work.
Over the last 25 years Catriona has undertaken training in a variety of healing modalities and combined listening to the animals within the weaving of these different practices. It is this combination that has given rise to the methodology of connection that she shares with individuals and groups.
Catriona is also an accredited Heart Math Institute trainer and a practitioner of Equine Facilitated Coaching, working as an enabler in the dialogue between humans and the horses as ‘way-showers’ in the remembering of kinship and the re-imagining of a new way of human being in our world.
The wisdom of Horse has always been the core of this work as well as always being at the heart of her own development, both personally and professionally. She has been accompanied on a journey of mutual transformation these last 20 years by an affectionate and deep-seeing part Arabian mare named Darcey, a brown and white gypsy cob of deep softness and strength named Molly, and a midnight coloured mare, named Inca, who still teaches and guides lessons of sovereignty in gentleness, from through the Veil.
When not out wandering the land and serving her apprenticeship as a story carrier, she loves to dance and is currently learning more about heart connections through Argentine Tango.
More recently, Mia and Charmaine Lane have joined Catriona in bringing the Imaginal Horse Circles out into the world……
Mia is one of the original circle that began meeting around the New Moons in early 2022 and has recently stepped forward to assist with all things admin. A role that is key in supporting the Horse Circles as they move out around the UK and overseas.
Mia came to Britain from her birthplace of France in 1996 after some years working in retail and then in education with women at their midlife threshold, following a thread in that move, that she sensed was her next step, but unsure exactly what this would bring. She lived in Bristol and Bath, and then travelled to Wales to visit her partner’s family and felt a strong sense of arriving home there. She and her partner and son then moved to live in West Wales, and currently live in a small market town, beside the grounds of Trinity St David’s University campus and by the Teifi River.
It was during her time living in London, newly arrived in a foreign country, that she encountered the writings of women describing their spiritual journeys. This spoke to her own searching and she connected with The Sacred Trust and began several years of training in their core shamanism programme. She felt a door opening, accompanied by the edginess of experiencing something that cannot then be unknown. A connection with Spirit, with the interdependence of all kinds of Life and the sense of Life as being something much bigger than her own experience of it. And out of that, a sense of the paradox of how tiny her own life is in this pattern of inter-relatedness, and at the same time, the unique place and purpose of her own life, as being something sacred. Mia ran regular journeying circles for many years here in Wales, teaching others how to access this skill.
For the last 10 years Mia has been in womens’ circles with Jules Heavens, learning the craft of witnessing and deep listening, both to herself and to others. A skill also honed in mothering and parenting her teenage son. She cares deeply for the healing and significance of being seen, of being witnessed and the potency of this in allowing another to stretch more fully into their unique being.
After experiencing at a retreat with Jules, the essential way that Breathwork can reset new pathways in the nervous system and give us deeper access to new ways of being, a unique opportunity presented to Mia to train as a Breathwork facilitator with Kim Rosen here in West Wales in 2018. Mia also uses these sessions, as a way of turning a mirror showing each person their triggers and then tilting the mirror, to show and create an opening for new insight and understandings.
Mia brings a quiet, deep and playful presence to the Horse Circles and attends to all things admin with a much appreciated clarity.
Charmaine is an Animal Communicator, McTimoney-Corley Animal Therapist (aka Chiropractor) for animals, an NLP and Hypnotherapy practitioner, and an Equine Facilitated Learning Practitioner. She recalls her earliest desire to be near ponies from the age of four and equines became an integral part of her life as she began riding in riding schools. From her teenage years onwards she borrowed, cared for and trained many horses which took her into Pony Club and then the world of dressage and equine sport, competing in Pony Club teams and the UK under 21 BYRDS team and progressing on to managing professional yards. A life crafted around her love of horses and one that “broke her heart many times”.
Charmaine trained with Leigh Shambo and Kathleen Barry Ingram in the HEAL method of Equine Facilitated Learning in 2009 and this brought a deep knowing and way of seeing horses that meant the competitive sport horse world no longer made any sense. Along with these insights she also received her first clear communications from horses.
The Imaginal Horse Circles are part of fulfilling a promise Charmaine made with Marge, a beautiful, huge hearted coloured mare that had whole heartedly served humans for her entire life. The agreement was about changing the horse-human relationship and was made to the mare as she passed from her body.
Along with her many skills, Charmaine brings her sense of fun and generous attending to the practicalities of creating and holding space in the circles. She is gifted in sensing and weaving with the presence of magic and beauty in the mundane. She brings all of this to the creating and expanding of the Horse Circles out into our world as well as co-facilitating the Meeting Place between horse and human. You can find out more about Charmaine and her work at www.amazingmind.co.uk