They Always Choose
Dear Spirit to Spirit friend,
There was a moment of extreme excitement this week in our home. It was a beautiful day, the patio slider was open, screen in.
I heard sounds unlike any I have ever heard before coming from the kitchen. As I raced in, I found the big black and white tomcat who wanders the area sitting at the screen, nose to nose with Jaya. Jaya was puffed up ten times his size, screaming deep, guttural yowls of the wild, facing off against this intruder and defending his territory. Mr. black and white tom sat there calmly, cooly, in supreme confidence, staring directly at Jaya.
I have seen this handsome tom wandering at the edges of the wooded area since I moved in a year ago. He seems to travel around this area as friends some streets away remark on seeing him. Five months ago, he had screen encounters with both Jaya and Taj. At that time, I invited him into a communication. He not only allowed it but quickly demonstrated to me that he is highly intelligent and understands everything I am saying. He seemed to accept and agree that "this- home/patio- is our dance space" (Dirty Dancing, remember?) and that he could claim as his territory all other outdoor space. The agreement remained intact for these five months.
As I quickly closed the slider, I reminded Mr. Tom (he has not yet shared his name) of the agreement we made months ago. His attitude spoke volumes- the agreement was no longer in play.
We, human beings, seem to think that if we have a connection, a communication, an agreement with an animal- family member or feral or wild- that s/he will always abide by that and that the agreement will never change. We certainly expect this from our fellow human beings and we often assume this with our animal family members. We seem to forget that animals live fully immersed in the present moment, living in the truth of who they are and responding through their sense of rightness to what is inside them and what presents in their lives. They choose- are always choosing- who they are and how they are, living in the flow, being a constant reponsiveness to each new moment in life.
In our uniquely bonded relationship with our animals family members, we can usually come to understanding and agreement because our bond in mind, body, and soul fosters alignment. We share in a beautiful dance in life together and even if something no longer feels right to our animal family member and an agreement falls away, our connectedness births new possibilities.
With feral and wild ones, it is different. As humans, we need to learn to lean into their experience, into their way of seeing, sensing and knowing, and invite agreements that mesh with not only what we would like but with who they are, how they see and experience life. Often a challenge for us human beings as we usually know what we want- and want what we want- and can find it hard to let go of our point of view and be open to agreements that may stretch us into different kinds of cooperation.
With Mr. Tomcat, as he left, he looked back, right into my eyes, and sent a very clear message: he will consider a new agreement. A few days later, as he was wandering by at a distance, he allowed me to sense this:
Some people in the area offer food as the season changes, and usually animals live in those homes. So, it is important for him to show himself and come right up to the door.
I bowed, acknowledging his truth, recognizing that we can now begin the process of
co-creating, leaving the door open for connection and conversation- if he chooses- so that we can discover a mutual agreement that serves all.
In Gratitude & Love, Joanna