Happy 15th birthday Willow! A true Taurus and Betlane cat. He received the traditional “can of birthday tuna. ” Read his story, a story about the very real encounters and connections we can have with Nature if we open our hearts and all our senses to it’s messages. I wrote this back in 2008 and am reposting it.
Those of you who have been to my lectures or classes know that I have had real encounters with the spirits of Nature. Some of these stories are published. They are real, I did not imagine it and I may be a bit Puckish myself, but I”m not crazy. My feet are firmly on Terra Firma.
I carry the gift of connecting to this realm both ancestrally (my grandmother Cate was a seer in Ireland) and through my soul essence. I have had another recent encounter and it happened just a week before an event I was holding for World Wide Fairy Festival, in which I was speaking on connecting with Nature.
Nature spirits can test us sometimes. Test our integrity, our compassion, to see if we are good stewards of the Earth they love and have personal integrity. I thought this encounter below was a test, and perhaps it was, for the nature spirit presence was very strong in the class I held that week, but I also learned that it really was about gift being given to me from the natural world.
I was moving away from a small state park in central New Jersey I call “my park.” This park has been a lifeline for me in a very crowded overdeveloped area. This park was also challenged by the energies and disrespect for nature, so over the 20 years I lived near it, I would send it healing as I walked through its trails. Over time, this park’s energy grew noticeably lighter and brighter. It felt happier. We developed a mutually beneficial partnership. After my time spent in this park I always felt rested, restored, and full of the answers to my questions that I came into the park with, all of the thoughts rattling in my head. It calmed my mind and soothed me if I was angry, hurt or direction -less. Very often I would talk to the Nature spirits in this park and feel them watching me as I walked by. This is and was, very real for me.
The winter before I left, I took my walk and I told the park I was leaving it. I told it I was moving away. As I walked I became emotional as I thanked it for all it gave me over the years I lived by it. Clarity, vision, health, restoration, energy, beauty. I told it the only thing I will miss in my move was it, “my park” and I meant it. I decided I would gift it with crystals programmed with healing and bury them at 4 points in the park and proceeded to do so that winter.
After I did this, I then became very busy, and I had not gone into the park since then. I became busy with work, but I was also avoiding it, emotionally distancing myself, trying to detach. Like distancing yourself from someone you must part with. I know I was doing this, and I could feel it calling me to come and walk. Every day. Everyday it called to me.
I finally set out after the urging became too strong to ignore. My husband and I went out at dusk, our favorite time (and also a favorite time for the Nature Spirits.) As we walked on the trail, we came upon a frog right smack center of the trail. We almost stepped on it and it did not move an inch even as we loomed over it and stumbled about. I bent down and it was the same color of the dirt and leaves around it. I was amazed it just sat there. I also became concerned that those who ride bikes on the trails or go running through it, might injure it. So I told the little frog to move, but it would not. I grabbed a small stick and tried to gently encourage it to move off. It would not budge. We decided to continue on and leave it be, but 10 seconds later I stopped suddenly, and went back to it. I was concerned it might be injured, because it was odd that it would not move. I had to help this frog. I am of the mind that when an act of kindness presents itself to you, you act on it. If the Divine puts something in your line of vision, it’s for you to act on.
It was gone.
I looked about the trail and did not see it. Relieved, we walked on and then a thought came to me; Was that a “fairy frog”? A frog who was directed into my path by the beings of Nature?
About 10 minutes later, as we headed back to the car, I heard a cat crying in distress. I’m like a mom; I hear cries of distress from any creature from blocks away. I looked down a trail and I saw, sitting in the middle of a trail, a very frightened but very friendly and affectionate white cat. As I approached him I noticed his eyes, they looked otherworldly. They seemed to glow with an ethereal light from a distance.
He was desperate for help but after I unveiled the carrier would not come near it. He has cuts all over him from brambles and his one ear is bleeding. I stayed with him until 10 pm, long after the park closed but was unable to get him into my cat carrier. I cried, as I had to leave him there, lonely, injured, frightened and abandoned. I left the food and some water for him.
I prayed to the angels and the spirit of the woods, asking for a good heart passerby to rescue him, as I had no hope at the time of finding him again. I asked for their help try to get this sweet frightened boy out of the park. The next day, I went back the next day with my dear friend and soul twin Karla LaVoie,(author of For Time and All Eternity, Love Never Dies”) with another can of food and called out “Kitty!” in the same area I had seen him the night before.
I knew the chance of him being still around there were slim. After just a moment I heard from a distance him answering me with a “meow”. I heard the slow crunch of him making his way through the woods, over a ridge. I looked up and he stared down at me with those strange eyes. He then tried to find his way towards me through thorns and thick underbrush. It was hard for him, but he worked his way over. I called upon the angels and the spirit of the wood, that overighting nature spirit who is in every large wooded area, to help me help this creature.
The angels sent a young couple that came along and they easily managed to pick him up and put him in my cat carrier! Amazing.
He is so incredibly loving, soft and tender I can’t imagine anyone abandoning him, let alone dumping him in the woods.
As he recovered at home, my brain told me NO MORE CATS. It also told me Id officially be the crazy cat lady who neighborhood kids throw rocks at the door. I asked everyday for the angels to tell me what to do with this sweet soul. To guide me and show me clearly, what I was to do.
I took a walk in the park the next day, and as I drove into the park I heard the spirits of Nature in the park begin to talk to me. Finally, they answered my questions.
I received the message that he was abandoned. A voice said as I drove through the park;
“He is our gift to you. Our gift to you as you leave us.”
Tears flowed as I heard this. I knew in my soul this was true. I wept because of the poignant message, the loving goodbye I received from the spirits of that woods. They were thanking me in the way that they would, by arranging this rescue of a lonely, desperate, sweet animal they also wanted to let me know that all these years, they heard me, they saw me, and they loved me too.
We named him Willow in honor of a favorite tree that I have loved since childhood at my parent’s home, that is no longer with us. I played in this tree for hours. Underneath it’s cool cascading leaves. I loved it so. The willow tree gives the gift of healing emotions, heart wounds and grief.
p.s. He has six toes.
Copyright 2008 Eileen Smith.
Copyright Eileen Anglin 2015
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