My Best Friend For Life

litebeing chronicles 2013

UPDATE 2018: It will be three years since Dexter passed on July 12th, 5 days from now. While I occasionally consider adopting again, I always find reasons to decline. My finances are unstable, or my health is unstable, or I want to travel, etc. The real truth is I am not ready yet. Like so many things, I won’t know until I know.

I spent some time around many cats while at a BBQ for the 4th of July. I clearly enjoyed their company and it appeared the feeling was mutual. For now, I will savor the time I have around felines however they find me. I continue to relish the love Dexter brought to me. He was a heart chakra activator extraordinaire.

Enjoy this post from 2015 ( below the 2016 update).

 

UPDATE 2016: July 12th will mark the one year anniversary of Dexter’s passing. Tomorrow will be more poignant for me because he passed on a Sunday. I am beginning to receive signs, some of which are rather bold, that is time to seriously explore adopting a new cat. While I will consider this guidance carefully, a part of me is still not quite ready. Dexter made me better, and I do not know if another soul can bring out the best that is left inside my soul.

Here is an old post written a week after Dex’s passing. It is heartfelt and chock full of excellent resources. Please send me some light tomorrow and show your loved ones how much they mean to you. It is everything.

Photo896

It has been incredibly challenging to simply survive this week. One week ago today, my beloved Dexter transitioned to another realm. So far this is a realm I cannot reach. I sincerely thank everyone here for their love and support. My longtime readers know that this year has not been an easy one. Your unwavering loyalty is priceless.

While writing is both my joy and my solace, words have not come easily to me lately. My pain is too great and my motivation too meager. Yet I do have a message to convey and I will attempt to do so to the best of my ability.

The week that Dexter died was a very busy one. While I know the word busy is relative, for me the increase in activity was substantial. Tuesday was the dentist, Wednesday and Thursday Caryn visited me, and Friday I took my car to the shop. Saturday, my last full day with Dexter was a blur, except for posting about master/students late at night. Sunday, of course, was my own private circle of hell. I wish I could remember more of my final day at home with Dexter, but I don’t. Unfortunately the details of last Sunday seem to be on a rotating loop inside my heart.

But I want to go back to earlier in the week to share some resources that have helped me and may help others who “stumble” upon my blog. Caryn and I have not been together in Philly since the 1990s. We did hang out last fall in NY after reconnecting on FB. I plan to blog about what brought me to NY, but that draft is not ready for completion. Caryn and I were so so busy: special Impressionist exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, movie night at an old lovely theater, 2 incredible meals ( one was Indian since we both adore it!) and a mini road trip to Longwood Gardens. Our 2 days were go go go and rather frenetic. The weather was horrible both days and my patience often wore thin. Yet grace did surround us in many ways: a deer crossing on a road where this “never” happens; a “random” encounter with a waiter that was filled with synchronicity, a gratis fruit platter that was a work of art in itself and discounts off our bill; and  the sheer joy of watching Caryn frolicking at Longwood for the very first time. The waterlilies  I am sharing were a highlight of this particular visit for me. They were not in bloom during my last two trips.

Photo897 (1)

Another source of peace was Matt Kahn. On Wednesday Caryn and I spoke about relationships and the nature of connections. That very evening I come home to notice a brand new video by Matt on soul mates and twin flames. In it he mentions, among many other things, that for some a soul mate may be their pet. This idea prompted me to refer to Dexter as my soul mate on my latest post. Matt refers to a soul mate as a balancing counterpart with little drama or intensity, but great love. While I do not agree with every point made, I find Matt’s take on the different type of soul connections to be fascinating and quite revelatory. This information is especially relevant in regards to next week’s Venus retrograde event.  I offer his video here:

 

Now I want to share some resources that have softened the loss by providing a rare understanding of my bond with my cats ( and most animals and inhabitants of the natural world) and some insight into the grieving process.

They are both courtesy of  Caryn and Karin, “the Carings” in my life. Caryn provided me with this link that really spoke to me. I am very picky about these grief expert offerings, perhaps because I provide these services in my work, or because I am quite discerning. In any case, this article was profoundly insightful. For those who may not understand the connection between human and animal, please take a look and your impressions may shift.

http://www.anaflora.com/grieving/beloved/beloved.html

I especially like both these passages:

The love of an animal permits us to unfold, to open up, drop our defenses and to be naked, not only physically but psychologically and spiritually as well. With an animal we let ourselves be seen instead of hiding behind our personalities, our cultures, our jobs, our clothing or our makeup. They know us as no one else does, in our private joys, angry rages, deepest despair, in sickness and in health. All the while their calm steady presence companions us with an unwavering love like few others on this earth. Our animal companions see through us to the very soul of our soul, encouraging the unfolding of a sacred trust. If there is such a thing as a soul mate, then surely this is it.

Many people have never been blessed with, or felt for themselves, the true love of an animal. They are incapable of understanding that your love for an animal may surpass your love for the humans that are the closest to you. It is a different bond, in a way, more profound; something only the heart understands. What I have learned over the years, as a student of grief and a student of many spiritual traditions, is that no guru, guide, master or friend no matter how enlightened can comfort the heart that believes it has lost what it holds most dear. Whether grieving ourselves, or consoling a grieving friend, often the most useful thing we can do is to simply tell our story. For in the story of our own journey through the gates of grief, or in bearing witness to the grief of another, we can at least legitimize the experience and make it “Sacred.”

Karin turned me on to this excellent video with medium Danielle MacKinnon that was posted just a few days ago. While I do hold some skepticism regarding animal communicators, Danielle is someone who naturally conveys authenticity and warmth. Please check it out if you are called to explore this topic further. What really struck me most was the question posed near the end of the interview.:

 Animals choose to pass at a particular time.  Ask yourself : What was it about this time that has meaning for you?

Here is the link for the video: https://wingingwithwhitehawk.wordpress.com/2015/07/16/pets-in-the-afterlife/

Finally I want to share some closing thoughts. It is so ironic that I have been so successful as a grief counselor. So very many clients over the years suffered unimaginable trauma and loss. I seem to be rather effective at facilitating healing for those in pain and was quite driven to focus on this area of therapy. Personally though, I suck at loss and death. I do not judge how I grieve, so please do not misconstrue my meaning. I just do not like to let go. I do not detach easily, especially if the bond was deep. Losing my first cat brought me to the brink of depression from which I doubted I would ever recover. Yet I did recover and I will recover from this loss. But this journey has just begun…

Let me conclude with a song that helps express the enormity of my love for Dexter. When I call him my best friend and soul mate, I am not exaggerating. It does not mean I do not love or have not loved other human beings deeply.

Dexter

It’s just different.


For a tribute to Dexter circa 2013ish, please visit OM’s site here.

My Best Friend For Life

July 12th will mark the one year anniversary of Dexter’s passing. Tomorrow will be more poignant for me because he passed on a Sunday. I am beginning to receive signs, some of which are rather bold, that is time to seriously explore adopting a new cat. While I will consider this guidance carefully, a part of me is still not quite ready. Dexter made me better, and I do not know if another soul can bring out the best that is left inside my soul.

Here is an old post written a week after Dex’s passing. It is heartfelt and chock full of excellent resources. Please send me some light tomorrow and show your loved ones how much they mean to you. It is everything.

Photo896

It has been incredibly challenging to simply survive this week. One week ago today, my beloved Dexter transitioned to another realm. So far this is a realm I cannot reach. I sincerely thank everyone here for their love and support. My longtime readers know that this year has not been an easy one. Your unwavering loyalty is priceless.

While writing is both my joy and my solace, words have not come easily to me lately. My pain is too great and my motivation too meager. Yet I do have a message to convey and I will attempt to do so to the best of my ability.

The week that Dexter died was a very busy one. While I know the word busy is relative, for me the increase in activity was substantial. Tuesday was the dentist, Wednesday and Thursday Caryn visited me, and Friday I took my car to the shop. Saturday, my last full day with Dexter was a blur, except for posting about master/students late at night. Sunday, of course, was my own private circle of hell. I wish I could remember more of my final day at home with Dexter, but I don’t. Unfortunately the details of last Sunday seem to be on a rotating loop inside my heart.

But I want to go back to earlier in the week to share some resources that have helped me and may help others who “stumble” upon my blog. Caryn and I have not been together in Philly since the 1990s. We did hang out last fall in NY after reconnecting on FB. I plan to blog about what brought me to NY, but that draft is not ready for completion. Caryn and I were so so busy: special Impressionist exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, movie night at an old lovely theater, 2 incredible meals ( one was Indian since we both adore it!) and a mini road trip to Longwood Gardens. Our 2 days were go go go and rather frenetic. The weather was horrible both days and my patience often wore thin. Yet grace did surround us in many ways: a deer crossing on a road where this “never” happens; a “random” encounter with a waiter that was filled with synchronicity, a gratis fruit platter that was a work of art in itself and discounts off our bill; and  the sheer joy of watching Caryn frolicking at Longwood for the very first time. The waterlilies  I am sharing were a highlight of this particular visit for me. They were not in bloom during my last two trips.

Photo897 (1)

Another source of peace was Matt Kahn. On Wednesday Caryn and I spoke about relationships and the nature of connections. That very evening I come home to notice a brand new video by Matt on soul mates and twin flames. In it he mentions, among many other things, that for some a soul mate may be their pet. This idea prompted me to refer to Dexter as my soul mate on my latest post. Matt refers to a soul mate as a balancing counterpart with little drama or intensity, but great love. While I do not agree with every point made, I find Matt’s take on the different type of soul connections to be fascinating and quite revelatory. This information is especially relevant in regards to next week’s Venus retrograde event.  I offer his video here:

 

Now I want to share some resources that have softened the loss by providing a rare understanding of my bond with my cats ( and most animals and inhabitants of the natural world) and some insight into the grieving process.

They are both courtesy of  Caryn and Karin, “the Carings” in my life. Caryn provided me with this link that really spoke to me. I am very picky about these grief expert offerings, perhaps because I provide these services in my work, or because I am quite discerning. In any case, this article was profoundly insightful. For those who may not understand the connection between human and animal, please take a look and your impressions may shift.

http://www.anaflora.com/grieving/beloved/beloved.html

I especially like both these passages:

The love of an animal permits us to unfold, to open up, drop our defenses and to be naked, not only physically but psychologically and spiritually as well. With an animal we let ourselves be seen instead of hiding behind our personalities, our cultures, our jobs, our clothing or our makeup. They know us as no one else does, in our private joys, angry rages, deepest despair, in sickness and in health. All the while their calm steady presence companions us with an unwavering love like few others on this earth. Our animal companions see through us to the very soul of our soul, encouraging the unfolding of a sacred trust. If there is such a thing as a soul mate, then surely this is it.

Many people have never been blessed with, or felt for themselves, the true love of an animal. They are incapable of understanding that your love for an animal may surpass your love for the humans that are the closest to you. It is a different bond, in a way, more profound; something only the heart understands. What I have learned over the years, as a student of grief and a student of many spiritual traditions, is that no guru, guide, master or friend no matter how enlightened can comfort the heart that believes it has lost what it holds most dear. Whether grieving ourselves, or consoling a grieving friend, often the most useful thing we can do is to simply tell our story. For in the story of our own journey through the gates of grief, or in bearing witness to the grief of another, we can at least legitimize the experience and make it “Sacred.”

Karin turned me on to this excellent video with medium Danielle MacKinnon that was posted just a few days ago. While I do hold some skepticism regarding animal communicators, Danielle is someone who naturally conveys authenticity and warmth. Please check it out if you are called to explore this topic further. What really struck me most was the question posed near the end of the interview.:

 Animals choose to pass at a particular time.  Ask yourself : What was it about this time that has meaning for you?

Here is the link for the video: https://wingingwithwhitehawk.wordpress.com/2015/07/16/pets-in-the-afterlife/

Finally I want to share some closing thoughts. It is so ironic that I have been so successful as a grief counselor. So very many clients over the years suffered unimaginable trauma and loss. I seem to be rather effective at facilitating healing for those in pain and was quite driven to focus on this area of therapy. Personally though, I suck at loss and death. I do not judge how I grieve, so please do not misconstrue my meaning. I just do not like to let go. I do not detach easily, especially if the bond was deep. Losing my first cat brought me to the brink of depression from which I doubted I would ever recover. Yet I did recover and I will recover from this loss. But this journey has just begun…

Let me conclude with a song that helps express the enormity of my love for Dexter. When I call him my best friend and soul mate, I am not exaggerating. It does not mean I do not love or have not loved other human beings deeply.

Dexter

It’s just different.


For a tribute to Dexter circa 2013ish, please visit OM’s site here.

Sisterhood of the Traveling Business Cards

Miracles happen in my world.

I have had some recent conversations with a diverse group of people this week. Spirituality was discussed with family and friends and I was enriched by each encounter. Conversations such as these often help me clarify my opinions and refine my worldview. Miracles were on the menu and here is my current definition. A miracle is an experience that totally surpasses the limits of my wildest imaginings. Let me tell you, my imaginings are quite wild so the bar for miracles is set very high.

Here is an example of what I would call an everyday miracle. An under the radar, subtle occurrence that defies logic or my wildest imagining. It happened a few weeks ago, but I held off on sharing it here. With the Pisces Full Moon approaching and Neptune opposing Jupiter adding significant woo-woo to the mix, the time for sharing this nugget of magic has arrived.

I have a friend who I met in 2002 when I first started practicing Quakerism. We will call her Mary. Mary and her husband are lovely, kind, generous people who made me feel at home immediately. While Mary’s husband is on Facebook, Mary is not so inclined. Mary and I began to drift apart once I stopped attending Quaker worship. My separation from the faith slowly drove a wedge between us. No one is to blame. It was a natural progression.

So I was very surprised to receive an email from her right after Dexter died. We have been out of touch for over a year, maybe longer. The content of this email blew me away. I will share the miraculous portion of the communication here. I know Mary would approve.

night-kitchen-bakery

 

Around the time I started this blog, I had ordered new business cards. This was a big deal for me as I was beginning to shift my focus to metaphysical services. I historically have had poor success attracting business with cards. Yet many people, like my late friend Robert, would ” nudge ” me to be more proactive in marketing myself.  So I created these new cards and began handing them out as Spirit dictated. I tend to display some cards at local businesses that have a positive vibe. The Night Kitchen is a popular local bakery ( see above) that had an assortment of cards and brochures from local artisans and healers and other business people. I have left a few cards there on occasion. Just to be clear, I have never received a phone call or email as a result of leaving my cards on display. NEVER. I have been much more likely to receive referrals by word of mouth or via the internet ( this blog, Facebook, etc,) That has not deterred me from leaving cards, but I want to be clear that I have wondered if anyone has ever picked up one of my cards.

That is, until now.

On the morning that Dexter became ill, Mary and her husband traveled to my neighborhood to attend Sunday meeting for worship. They went first to the Night Kitchen to get some coffee and treats. This was prior to the 10:30 AM services. Mary noticed my business cards because she liked the design and the font. She picked one up and saw it had my name on it. She decided to keep it with her and contact me later on. She thought of me during the worship service. The service was between 10:30 and 11:30 AM. This was the exact time period when Dexter woke me up and I prepared to get him to the vet. I was frightened and prayed I could keep it together to get both of us out the door and to the vet as soon as possible. I was barely awake and feeling very disorganized. While I was getting though this difficult day, she was praying for me. Quakers call it holding one in the light. 

Around this time that the service would be breaking up, I came home briefly to update people on Facebook about Dexter. I was informing my friends that we were heading to the veterinary hospital because his condition was very serious. Later that evening I updated Facebook again to let everyone know that Dexter had passed on. Mary’s husband is a Facebook friend and he informed her about Dexter. Both Mary and her husband have house sat both of my cats. They also are cat people and have had to put down one of their precious babies around the time I lost Jasmine. They took great care of Jasmine and Dexter when they lived nearby. Mary emailed me with her condolences and informed me about the events of that day.

This event is a miracle in my book. What seems like a string of random events were perfectly orchestrated to give me strength when I desperately needed it. Remember, no one before has ever contacted me to say they found one of my cards. Also keep in mind that I was no longer in touch with Mary or her husband ( except for a very loose Facebook connection). I did not even know he read my Facebook updates. When I read her email I was shocked by its contents. But on another level, I was soothed by her words. I was being taken care of by Spirit in a way that defied explanation. I was being lifted up, unbeknownst to me.

Jupiter and Neptune together are all about faith, miracles, and over the top outcomes. Fortunate encounters, fortuitous fortune, shimmering exuberance, playful joy, expanded perception, etc..  I especially like and would add the phrase ethereal voyage. On one of the worst days of my life, there was an ethereal voyage taking place behind the scenes. It was a voyage that reignited the sisterhood of two dear friends (spiritual sisters) via the magic of a single business card.

Wishing everyone an ethereal voyage on this upcoming Pisces Full Moon.

My Best Friend

Photo896

It has been incredibly challenging to simply survive this week. One week ago today, my beloved Dexter transitioned to another realm. So far this is a realm I cannot reach. I sincerely thank everyone here for their love and support. My longtime readers know that this year has not been an easy one. Your unwavering loyalty is priceless.

While writing is both my joy and my solace, words have not come easily to me lately. My pain is too great and my motivation too meager. Yet I do have a message to convey and I will attempt to do so to the best of my ability.

The week that Dexter died was a very busy one. While I know the word busy is relative, for me the increase in activity was substantial. Tuesday was the dentist, Wednesday and Thursday Caryn visited me, and Friday I took my car to the shop. Saturday, my last full day with Dexter was a blur, except for posting about master/students late at night. Sunday, of course, was my own private circle of hell. I wish I could remember more of my final day at home with Dexter, but I don’t. Unfortunately the details of last Sunday seem to be on a rotating loop inside my heart.

But I want to go back to earlier in the week to share some resources that have helped me and may help others who “stumble” upon my blog. Caryn and I have not been together in Philly since the 1990s. We did hang out last fall in NY after reconnecting on FB. I plan to blog about what brought me to NY, but that draft is not ready for completion. Caryn and I were so so busy: special Impressionist exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, movie night at an old lovely theater, 2 incredible meals ( one was Indian since we both adore it!) and a mini road trip to Longwood Gardens. Our 2 days were go go go and rather frenetic. The weather was horrible both days and my patience often wore thin. Yet grace did surround us in many ways: a deer crossing on a road where this “never” happens; a “random” encounter with a waiter that was filled with synchronicity, a gratis fruit platter that was a work of art in itself and discounts off our bill; and  the sheer joy of watching Caryn frolicking at Longwood for the very first time. The waterlilies  I am sharing were a highlight of this particular visit for me. They were not in bloom during my last two trips.

Photo897 (1)

Another source of peace was Matt Kahn. On Wednesday Caryn and I spoke about relationships and the nature of connections. That very evening I come home to notice a brand new video by Matt on soul mates and twin flames. In it he mentions, among many other things, that for some a soul mate may be their pet. This idea prompted me to refer to Dexter as my soul mate on my latest post. Matt refers to a soul mate as a balancing counterpart with little drama or intensity, but great love. While I do not agree with every point made, I find Matt’s take on the different type of soul connections to be fascinating and quite revelatory. This information is especially relevant in regards to next week’s Venus retrograde event.  I offer his video here:

 

Now I want to share some resources that have softened the loss by providing a rare understanding of my bond with my cats ( and most animals and inhabitants of the natural world) and some insight into the grieving process.

They are both courtesy of  Caryn and Karin, “the Carings” in my life. Caryn provided me with this link that really spoke to me. I am very picky about these grief expert offerings, perhaps because I provide these services in my work, or because I am quite discerning. In any case, this article was profoundly insightful. For those who may not understand the connection between human and animal, please take a look and your impressions may shift.

http://www.anaflora.com/grieving/beloved/beloved.html

I especially like both these passages:

The love of an animal permits us to unfold, to open up, drop our defenses and to be naked, not only physically but psychologically and spiritually as well. With an animal we let ourselves be seen instead of hiding behind our personalities, our cultures, our jobs, our clothing or our makeup. They know us as no one else does, in our private joys, angry rages, deepest despair, in sickness and in health. All the while their calm steady presence companions us with an unwavering love like few others on this earth. Our animal companions see through us to the very soul of our soul, encouraging the unfolding of a sacred trust. If there is such a thing as a soul mate, then surely this is it.

Many people have never been blessed with, or felt for themselves, the true love of an animal. They are incapable of understanding that your love for an animal may surpass your love for the humans that are the closest to you. It is a different bond, in a way, more profound; something only the heart understands. What I have learned over the years, as a student of grief and a student of many spiritual traditions, is that no guru, guide, master or friend no matter how enlightened can comfort the heart that believes it has lost what it holds most dear. Whether grieving ourselves, or consoling a grieving friend, often the most useful thing we can do is to simply tell our story. For in the story of our own journey through the gates of grief, or in bearing witness to the grief of another, we can at least legitimize the experience and make it “Sacred.”

Karin turned me on to this excellent video with medium Danielle MacKinnon that was posted just a few days ago. While I do hold some skepticism regarding animal communicators, Danielle is someone who naturally conveys authenticity and warmth. Please check it out if you are called to explore this topic further. What really struck me most was the question posed near the end of the interview.:

 Animals choose to pass at a particular time.  Ask yourself : What was it about this time that has meaning for you?

Here is the link for the video: https://wingingwithwhitehawk.wordpress.com/2015/07/16/pets-in-the-afterlife/

Finally I want to share some closing thoughts. It is so ironic that I have been so successful as a grief counselor. So very many clients over the years suffered unimaginable trauma and loss. I seem to be rather effective at facilitating healing for those in pain and was quite driven to focus on this area of therapy. Personally though, I suck at loss and death. I do not judge how I grieve, so please do not misconstrue my meaning. I just do not like to let go. I do not detach easily, especially if the bond was deep. Losing my first cat brought me to the brink of depression from which I doubted I would ever recover. Yet I did recover and I will recover from this loss. But this journey has just begun…

Let me conclude with a song that helps express the enormity of my love for Dexter. When I call him my best friend and soul mate, I am not exaggerating. It does not mean I do not love or have not loved other human beings deeply.

Dexter

It’s just different.


For a tribute to Dexter circa 2013ish, please visit OM’s site here.

A Break in the Action

Here’s to some gratitude while I prepare for tomorrow’s total eclipse. First, thank you Leigh for inspiring me to upgrade my radical gratitude practice. Thank you Dewin for inspiring me to take another look at how my art can impact others ( I used Dancing Rainbow Wheels as today’s header image).

With Ceres on my Ascendant ( give or take a degree) , I have a huge heart and a caretaker persona. While I do not have any children of my own ( long story, perhaps I ‘ll share another time), I always have others to nurture. My animal companions are among my favorites and all my pets ( including my gerbil back in Junior High) are my babies. The love I receive sends my heart chakra into orbit. While lately my heart has been shaken with odd pains and surges and gas, etc, my heart melts when I interact with Dexter.

He loves to meditate with me, which is hysterical. I have been doing the latest Deepak/ Oprah 21 day challenge and when the music starts to play during the intro, Dexter will stop whatever he is doing and hop on the couch to join in. It is amazing how tuned in he is to this practice. He also knows when I am going to sleep as he springs into action and tries to follow me as I get ready for bed.

I just snapped these two photos. Dexter is not a “camera ready” kinda cat, so it is a miracle that I was able to catch these shots:

Photo534

Here he is, barely awake. Otherwise , he would have pounced out of his bed within seconds of seeing me with camera-phone in hand!

Photo529

When I see him all comfy cozy in his cat bed, snoring away, I feel like all is right with my world. It is such a privilege to take care of him and watch him peacefully relax in slumber.

Is this the calm before the storm or a break in the action? Or just a quiet moment to reflect on how fortunate I am to be able to give and receive love.

Who are you grateful for?

What opens up your heart chakra?