Friday, June 12, 2009
Today Crystal passed on. Her sweet spirit was so ready to fly, her body was so tired.
When our vet began the injection, Crystal never flinched, cried, or moaned. It was all so very quiet and... peaceful. I felt her spirit release itself from her body and fly. She physically relaxed and I saw her fur ruffle as if a breeze blew across her face. She sighed and then only her body remained.
It's never easy to follow through with such a request--it goes against what you feel your responsibility is as a pet owner. You feel your job is to take good care of them and keep them alive. What you have to remember, what accompanies that job is being able to hear them when they say they're ready to go. It has been asked 'how do you know' or 'how do you know that's what they want'.
If you're truly listening, truly attuned, you will hear.
When I lost my dear sweet Emily I mourned her absence; I mourned her leaving. I mourned not having a cat--I mourned. So deep was my grief I stayed in bed and cried myself to sleep... she had been my soul companion through so much, for so long, how would I survive. I prayed, begged, and pleaded for her to visit me in whatever way she could. I bargained--just show up in my dreams, for even a second. And eventually she did.
The dream: night time and I was coming up to a gas station on a bicycle. There I saw her scooting across the parking lot, glancing my direction, pausing, meeting my eyes and she was gone. In that brief moment I knew she was ok, that she was doing her work; she had moved on.
So that began my belief that animals have work to do here in this lifetime, that's why they come into our lives. Then, when their job is done, they move on. And in dream time, they are doing their jobs. As badly as I wanted to grab up Emily and hold her once again, she wouldn't come near me. In that passing moment, she told me I was fine, she had things to do, she was busy, it was good to see me....
I asked for a dream because I believe in dream time. I believe that's where a lot of learning goes on, when our conscious selves are out of the way and our senses are clear and alert. We may not always understand the dream or its meaning, but, if we remember, eventually the answer will come.
It's been a full week since my vacation from work began. And my dreams still reflect my spirit self working with sick, abandoned, and injured animals. Night after night I find myself in situations that relate to making sure to care for the animals in clinics and sanctuaries. Morning after morning I wake slowly to remember each detail of dreams from the night before. Often I am saddened in that even in my dreams I am lousy at miracles, that I still cannot miraculously heal the injured (since it's a dream, I expect those kind of super powers!) and the sick continue to be sick.
A friend recently guided me to this realization--that sometimes in dreams, as in life, animals need the opportunity to die on their terms. Even if that means holding them closely when they pass or just being near. Which in turn reminded me of a quote I found in a drawer awhile back, "Sometimes healing isn't helping to get better, sometimes healing is helping pass over."
So Brent put a thought in my mind the other day and it's still there. Actually an image. We had been talking about monks and nuns and he said he believed they were holding the world together, with their prayers. The image that immediately came to my mind was an image of the earth seen in space with gossamer white tendrils encircling it. Immediately following that image was the thought that all who pray are really doing a big job. And following that thought was 'what is prayer'. Words with intent. Words of intent. Thoughts of intent..... intent. Intently Being. Being Aware.
Update June 25
I want to say that Crystal had a massive stroke the night before this story began. She was with us for almost 13 years and was in the gentle decline that geriatric beings can go through. The stroke left her unable to walk, eat or drink. While the decision was hard, it was truly what she wanted.