When I was a little girl I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up… Some children said “fireman!” Some said “my mom!” Others said “ballerina,” or “hockey player.”
I said I wanted to be a watersnake.
Yes, you read that correctly… A watersnake.
I was born a dancer . . . a child who loved movement so much that it became the predominate “language” by which I could express myself. Watching the deliberate and dodgy flight of a bird, the calculated gaze of a feline, or the way a snake would gracefully…silently…maneuver through a sylvan stream…was, to me, as a flat screen would be to a child today. You couldn’t pull me away.
I was born and Empath and an intuitive . . . a child who saw the World through a broader, infinitely magical lens, behind which the nuances of the animal kingdom were felt…not only seen. I wouldn’t only see a mother feeding her babies…but I’d feel a sense of devoted nurturing. I wouldn’t see two animals fight over territory or food, but feel a sense of power, and final sovereignty and submission. Those things were palpable.
I was positively captivated.
Paralyzed by the beauty, inspired by the strength and perseverance, I was born with unmeditated love for animals as far back as I remember.
One of my dearest friends – truly a sister – manages a beautiful farm in Aiken, South Carolina. Avalo Farm and Cat Sanctuary are home to at least 100 felines, several German Shepards (and, at one time, eight puppies!), a dozen horses, chickens, hens…and rather a lot of aquatic life!
Michelle deserves her own post altogether (and I have mentioned her in the past) – she touched my heart from the first moment we exchanged words, and now cares for my gorgeous baby girl, Kemisi, an F1 Chausie. Michelle is the epitome of an “animal person.” Every aspect of her Life is shaped by these beautiful creatures…the reward for which is only their love. For her, that is enough.
The love of an animal, ANY animal, and particularly one who is feral, is a gift beyond words.
If an animal has a “tiff” with you…you have a few moments of working it out and then it’s over. (Kemisi and I had countless staredowns! I’d not recommend it, particularly with a Chausie, but communication for us was an artform! Her averted eyes let me know that we could move on.)
If an animal is hungry, it will let you know, and it will eat as it needs to.
If an animal doesn’t feel well, it will often remain stouthearted…even heroic. It will manage itself and do what it has to.
If one of the clan is threatened, the others will rise up in its stead. Mankind could learn a great deal, the way I see it…myself very much included!
After going through quite a bit of trauma in my early 20’s, I had the opportunity to become the guardians of two extraordinary wild felines – Kemisi and Khonsu were only a few weeks when they came to me, and we were inseparable – loves of my Life. ❤ The gifts I received from the blessing of their love and friendship is well beyond measure…
The devotion, the compassion, the lessons about my own nature, and about theirs…these two impacted my Life far more than I’d have ever dreamed.
My two precious rescues, whom I currently have the fortune to love, have been a beacon of hope and light in their own ways. In truth, I’m not sure how I lived so long without animals in my home – it was a difficult few years…and lonely in such a way that only an animal’s presence could alter it.
I’d find myself talking walks, periodically…listening to the songs in the trees above me, the silly, playful pants of dogs running in the park…even the symphony of crickets in the Night. Anything to be around Nature…and to be exposed to the Life it bears, meant so much.
There’s something about the animal kingdom that flares my alexithymia… I literally have no words to describe the majesty of what it offers humankind. Even if owning a pet isn’t possible...being outside and truly noticing the sounds, perceiving the movements, basking in the splendor of the creatures around you…and really FEELING all surrounding it…will enrich Life like you cannot imagine.