I had an unexpectedly emotional start to my day today.
After my morning Reiki I like to do my stretching exercises while catching up on recordings of my favorite TV shows. This morning I decided to watch the previous night’s Dancing with the Stars semi-finals.
It might surprise some folks to learn that I watch reality TV, but I love dancing and other creative art forms, and find it inspiring to watch people grow and change. Dance is not only expressive—it can also be healing.
My cat Manitou enjoys lounging in bed for the start of my exercises, but will often join me on the floor halfway through where he offers encouragement in the form of loving cat kisses and head and face presses (which are particularly effective since I am kneeling at his level).
At this time Manitou was still up on the bed, and I took a momentary pause in my workout to watch star Kel Mitchell explain why Whitney Houston’s poignantly beautiful song “I Will Always Love You” held special meaning for him. He shared how his best friend died at 16 as a result of his involvement in a gang, and how that had made Kel particularly sensitive to the issue of gun violence.
Later on, Whitney’s song made a touching appearance in a play that Kel was acting in. In the play, his character is shot and dies, and the song is sung afterward. Kel concluded with dedicating his contemporary dance to victims of gun violence, which was an emotional moment for him. I had tears in my eyes just listening.
And when the first strains of “I Will Always Love You” were heard, and Kel and partner Witney Carson began their contemporary dance, the emotional intensity increased. At that point I think perhaps viewers were tapping into our grief as a nation over the all too numerous tragedies at schools, churches, clubs and public events.
So there I am, sitting on the floor with tears streaming down my face. I was completely caught up in the beauty and raw emotions of the dance, when I became aware of movement out of the corner of my left eye. Turning my head I saw that Manitou was reaching his paw out to me. He was leaning so far out he was in danger of falling off the bed.
At the exact moment that Manitou’s paw made contact with my hair, and he began drawing me close, the song’s final line was heard, “Ooh, I’ll always, I’ll always love you.” It was like something out of a classic romance movie as Manitou pressed his forehead to mine, and it made me smile through my tears.
Nothing is more healing than the power of love, and sometimes that reminder is delivered through our animal companions.
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A WILD WAY TO HEAL
Rose De Dan, Wild Reiki and Shamanic Healing LLC, is an animal communicator, Reiki Master Teacher, shamanic energy healer, and author. Her classes, sessions and ceremonial work are inspired by wild and domestic animals who have issued a call to action for personal and global healing.
Her book Tails of a Healer: Animals, Reiki and Shamanism features heartwarming stories about animals and their role in her evolution as an energy worker and shamanic healer.