The Calico Cat showed up at the fountain (otherwise known as the Wild Reiki Spa) for the first time a week ago.
Unlike most visitors who stop for a quick drink, Calico Cat’s visit was not brief. Instead, she first cased out the fountain and finally, slowly, climbed up on it (see Calico Cat and Opossum at the Wild Reiki Spa), spending almost a half hour total that time and on her second visit a few hours later.
At first, she only came at night. Then she began coming in the daytime before my household arose, and my cat Manitou went outside (see The Return of the Calico Cat).
The wildlife cam faithfully recorded almost every moment of her visits, all of them clocking in between 20-30 minutes. At each visit, she would crouch in one spot for a while before moving to another, making her way around the base and upper level.
As an animal lover, communicator and healer, I “listen” on many levels. And the more visits she made, the more insistent a little voice got that I needed to pay attention. There was something more to her visits than curiosity.
My first insight was that Calico Cat was drawn to the energy of the fountain and the water because they were blessed with Reiki and shamanic energy—she was soaking in the healing energy. I wondered how old she was. It is difficult to tell age from a distance, but my intuition said she was an older cat.
At first, she drank quite a bit of water in sips here and there over each visit. Then her drinking began to taper off. I began to get the feeling that she was shrinking. I wondered if she was getting enough to eat. I thought perhaps she had a home but was not sure.
In the last couple of videos, I saw her sway a bit while on the fountain and wobble on the dismount.
Last night, I was setting up the wildlife cam when I saw Calico Cat walking down the alley toward me. Her posture was somewhat hunched, which at first I ascribed to the fact that there was no cover at the intersection of the alley and the street which might make her feel vulnerable.
I let her know that she was very welcome to visit at any time and that I would not press to get close to her and headed back into the house. The wildlife cam faithfully recorded that she climbed on the fountain a few minutes after.
Heading out on my walk, I stopped for a moment to check on her. Calico Cat was perched on the fountain, and while she did not run off, I felt that she was more comfortable with some distance, so I did not approach. I again assured her that she was welcome and went on my way. She spent another extended period of time there before heading back to the alley.
This time when I looked at the footage, I saw more little wobbles than before. Calico Cat seemed weaker, and I did not see her drink much, if anything at all.
This morning when I awoke, Calico Cat was back at the fountain. This time I was able to observe her live rather than with the cam. Her body posture screamed discomfort, and I could easily see the wobbles from afar. She was definitely getting weaker.
At that moment, I fully realized that Calico Cat was very ill and possibly dying. Huge impact for me emotionally. As a child, I had wanted to be like Laurie McBain in Disney’s The Three Lives of Thomasina. She lived in the woods, and the animals came to her for healing. I thought that those dreams had already come true since I had become a professional Reiki shamanic energy healer and animal communicator. Those sessions are booked by loving humans, many of them for senior animals who need support for quality of life and the eventual transition when it is time.
Recently, the old, at least partially blind Opossum (see Opossum and the Apple) had made my yard a daily stop for almost a month. He’d been getting thinner, slower and also had wounds from some attack. When Opossum missed a few days right after our deadly heatwave, I was sure he had transitioned. I built him a Bridge of Light, and I grieved.
Early one evening, while I was teaching an online class from the coolness of the catio, one student asked if I had seen him recently. I was about to share that I thought he was in spirit when Opossum stepped out of the shrubberies and headed straight for me. It was like a dream. The serendipity of that moment literally made my arm hairs stand on end. It felt like he was reassuring me and, at the same time, saying goodbye. I have not seen him since, and while I miss him, I am glad he is free of the body that no longer served him.
As I watched Calico Cat on her energy healing fountain perch, I felt a weight of responsibility come crashing down on me. She had come into my healing space seeking support for whatever she was struggling with. I knew what to do for my clients and the wild ones. The question was, did Calico Cat have a home? If she did, what would be appropriate?
I reached out to her mentally and asked if she would like some Reiki sent to her. She said, “Yes.” A cat of few words. So, for about 20 minutes, I sent her distance Reiki and Reiki to the situation for her highest and best good.
During that time, Calico Cat relaxed into the energy, head nodding, trying to get more comfortable on the fountain (see video below – note that she was so relaxed her tail was dangling in the water). She even tried to tuck her paws under her chest (something she had not done before), but there was not enough room. I could feel and see how much she needed the energy physically and emotionally. After the send felt complete, I went out onto the catio where she could see me.
I greeted her with a cat eye blink which said that I meant no harm, and she responded in kind. Her eyes were a beautiful green. I received the impression that she was independent and no softie—not a cuddle kitty.
I told her I needed to feed my own cats and that she was welcome. I also invited her to let me know if she was hungry.
I had not finished preparing food for my own cats when I saw Calico Cat leave. The way she moved made me feel I needed to watch her cross the street. Perhaps I could obtain more information about how to help and discover where she went.
As I exited the house, Calico Cat was about halfway across the street and moving very slowly. Her back legs wobbled a bit, and she was clearly weak. My heart twinged as I understood that she needed energetic support badly enough to risk being vulnerable leaving her territory, so I adjusted my intensity and posture to slow, easy and non-threatening. She paused at the entrance to the alley, so I crossed the street to be closer so that I could speak to her out loud.
My crow family (Rogue, Milady, and their two juveniles) were waiting for their breakfast at the Wild Rose Café (they get fed after my cats) and observed all of this with interest.
Standing in the gutter in my bare feet(!), I was amazed to have Rogue land on the ground less than three feet away from me. He ruffled his neck feathers and greeted me silently. The rest of the family landed to my left. I was now encircled and supported by calm, silent crows as I asked Calico Cat—who was about six feet from all of us—how I could help her. I did not receive an answer, but I also did not get a refusal. That would have to do.
Turning away, Calico Cat slowly walked down the alley. I gave her a moment and then followed after. I was too late to see exactly where she went, but it gave me a starting point. Turning back, I discovered that the crow family had been following along, too. There are times I wish I had a camera following me around since even I find some of these moments unreal.
Returning to the house and all-important breakfast preparations, I pondered my next move. I definitely needed to find out if Calico Cat had a home. After my recent involvement with the Ginger Cat (see Finding Peace for This Old Soul) I was understandably concerned over the possibility that Calico Cat might have been abandoned to die.
Later that morning, gathering up my courage and sending some Reiki to the situation, I set out to knock on the doors of neighbors I did not know. The first house I came to, I asked energetically if this is where I should knock and got a “no.” The next house, I got a “yes,” and with a sinking heart, I took in the state of disrepair of yard and house—neither looked promising or welcoming.
I rang the bell with no response. I knocked. No response. I turned away and was halfway down the path when the front door opened a crack. I could barely see the man.
I did my best to project harmlessness and caring, which is harder to do with a mask on, introduced myself as a neighbor, and asked if he knew a calico cat. I explained that she had been visiting my yard daily, stressing that she seemed sick and very weak. I shared that I was concerned, not knowing if she had a home.
The door never opened fully, but we established enough connection that I learned she was 14 years old, more feral than not, had been more an indoor cat but now spent most of her time outside, had times in the past when she did not eat much (which he said she was doing now), and that it was usually his wife who handled things and she was away. I also learned that the Calico Cat’s name was Abby.
I did my best to express how ill I felt Abby was, said that I was an animal lover and if help was needed I would be happy to do what I could. He cautioned me that Abby did not take to everyone and that I needed to be careful as I could get clawed. I assured him that I would always respect her space (which she had made quite clear to me) and would never try to pet unless asked. My neighbor said that he would pass the information on to his wife. I knew I had done all I could, and returned home.
Obviously, I don’t know how all of this will play out. I have built Abby a Bridge of Light for whenever it is her time to cross, and set my intention to hold space for whatever energy healing or other support she might desire. She is always welcome at the Wild Reiki Spa, and we will take it one moment at a time.
Postscript: Several days later I was approached by the wife of the man I had spoken with about Calico Cat Abby. She thanked me for bringing Abby’s condition to her attention. She had not been home for a few days while caring for her elderly mother. She was able to spend one night snuggling with Abby, and brought her to the vet the next day. Abby had a seizure while there and passed away. She had advanced stage kidney disease, poor dear. I know that Reiki helped with her transition and that she is no longer suffering, but I will miss her. Grateful that I was able to get to know her even for a brief time. May you journey well, Abby!
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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.