Our Animals

Honoring ANGEL: the Alpha Animal and the protector of our domain
Angel at the door
Angel waiting at the door for Doug

Angel has been Doug’s constant companion for 12 years. Doug is her whole life. There is no more faithful and loving friend. She has always been the Alpha Dog and a strong personality. For years she went sailing with Doug, hanging off the edge of his racing boat. Now that she is older, she sits at the door until he returns.

She has many delightful expressions. When someone in the family has been away and returns to Circle of Light, she picks up a leaf or twig or a toy in her mouth and carries it around wagging her tail in happiness. If you give her a treat, she hides it and guards it with her life, growling if you get near it. (It is often in Doug and Yael’s bed!)

No animal can approach Circle of Light without Angel’s blessing! She is the keeper of the castle! However, during a thunderstorm she becomes a whimpering baby and has to be near one of us.

Honoring CHRISTOS: A new beautiful body for Yael’s long time companion
Quiet for a moment

For many years Christos has been Yael’s constant companion. In his former vehicle he was with Yael almost 15 years. Before he left his old body, Christos helped Yael find the perfect new vehicle for him (Thank you, God, for the internet!). Christos in his new baby body traveled from Mississippi and Doug picked up a little bouncy bundle of Love at the airport. He is two years old now and weighs about five pounds. He is a running, dancing, jumping expression of joy every minute! He twirls in circles, sometimes twenty five at a time!

We knew for sure that “new Christos” was Christos by Angel’s response to him. Angel is very protective and never allows another dog into our yard without grand and loud protest. When Christos II arrived, she sniffed him a few times but uttered nary a word, and from day one, they slept on the bed together with Yael and Doug. He was recognized and accepted! It was also very amusing to see Christos II immediately grab Yael’s socks from the kitchen floor and carry them into the bedroom, just as his predecessor always did with her shoes at the end of a wedding.

There have been times when Miss Angel isn’t sure she wants a bouncing ball brother and nudges him away, but most of the day they romp together with great pleasure. The cats were initially quite afraid of this strange tiny new beast in perpetual motion but now they find him a fun playmate. Ariel cat and Christos are good friends and roll around together. Sweetie and Christos play chase in the yard (NOT in the house, however. Sweetie wants to be sure she can get away if needed.)

Honoring our (sometimes unpredictable) cat family
Lovie of the cosmic eyes

And then comes the cat family of four. (1) Love Kitty (Lovie) is Doug’s cat. She has eyes that are like looking into the deep pools of the cosmos. (2) Ariel, an anchor for the Archangel of the same name and the Angel of Yael and Doug’s union, is everybody’s kitty and the largest of the brood. These beautiful Ragdoll cats are now about eight years old (summer 2011).

Long ago we were told that the Ragdolls were the Indigo children of the cat world, that they have a different DNA from other cats and that they have special abilities to communicate Love and open hearts. They are definitely people cats. When people visit Circle of Light to talk about future weddings, the cats charm them with their antics. We have to assure our clients that even though they may enjoy them, the cats are not predictable enough to have around during weddings.

On May 30, 2006 we had the magnificent experience of watching while our Love Kitty gave birth to five beautiful kittens. Believe it or not, the animals arranged it! After many unsuccessful attempts on our part to find a Ragdoll daddy for our kitties, a beautiful orange and white traveler visited. Our Lovie chose to join with him, and then in appropriate time, she chose our kitchen counter to birth 5 adorable kittens with the three of us in attendance. She purred happily as we petted her throughout the birth, and we had the joy of watching these little bundles of Love grow. Of this group of babies, we kept (3)Desiree (Desi) here with us. She is orange with large circles on her back (appropriate for Circle of Light!).

Ah, and now… introducing (“squeak!”) (4) Bliss, our shelter cat. Bliss is white with pale orange markings on her paws and tail and face. When we heard about her, Yael felt her communicating with her, and so, behold! she became part of the family. Both Bliss and Desi vie for Yael’s attention, and she does her best to divide it evenly.

In case you are wondering, we had to release our wonderful Magic Cat to the mysteries of the cosmos. After all the magnificent messages that became his book and our deep and abiding Love, and after making a transition from one old body to another beautiful one, Magic decided to leave Earth life completely and travel in the realms of Spirit. One night he simply did not come home and sent Messages that he was exploring in other realms and doing some preparation work for us. It was very difficult to release our image of him in a physical body, but we respect and honor the ways of Spirit and we know our Magic is never far from Circle of Light.!

Yael on Animal Communication
I believe that my communication with animals and with nature is a natural result of a consistent practice of meditation. It is something that everyone can accomplish by truly stilling the mind and opening the heart. As meditation quiets the mind, it gives the opportunity to see and hear other things besides our internal dialog. Then we can hear the communication with all life. I believe that all of the living, glorious conscious universe is there for any who decide to listen. However, listening takes practice and dedication. Like all humans, I am still practicing. I still struggle with my “programming” too, sometimes assuming these things can’t be true until proven, even while my whole being is telling me it is true! As this transformation moves forward, it will be important to realize that we share the experience. We share our lives with an array of conscious beings who are waiting to be acknowledged. Animals, nature, every part of this “wholeness” is ready to assist and enlighten us.

An interesting thing happened once when I was having a walk with my dog, Cin Cin, some years ago. We were doing our usual round, because Cin Cin refuses to change it, when she suddenly stopped to sniff a piece of paper on the street. Now, I don’t usually pick up waste-paper in the streets, but I just couldn’t pull my dog away from it. So I turned back and collected it. It was a red paper heart and on the other side, inside a small circle, I read these words: “Open your heart, don’t be afraid, I will be with you.” This paper heart has helped me go through all these years. I still have it in my purse.

When I was young and my older brothers went off to school, I often went searching for playmates in the neighborhood. I had a tiny bicycle that I could ride at the age of three and 1/2. On my adventures, my constant companion was Cinder, a female, black lab mix with a bobbed tail. Much to my Mother’s horror she often called the neighbors and local police to alert them to the fact that I had ridden off again. They all knew to look out for a three or four year old girl on a tiny blue two wheeled bike with small black lab mix dog with a tiny two inch tail at her side.

Interestingly, when Cinder miraculously arrived in our home with a Mother who did not desire pets shortly before Christmas, I had wanted to name her Jesus. I would often put an extra bowl of water out in the back yard for Jesus when I would give Cinder her morning water. I would put the bowl down and look up into the sky and tell Jesus that this was for him and that Cinder and I wouldn’t let him get thirsty again.

Cinder died when I was away with most of the family on vacation during my high school years. School started right away and all of the happy memories of Cinder were replaced by happy times swimming with our new dog. Over thirty years passed before I thought of Cinder again in a substantive way. While I was reading a book, a section covering the importance of grieving came up. With all of the losses in my life to consider it truly surprised me that memories of Cinder suddenly came to mind and dominated my consciousness. I cried heartfeltly, with gasping, powerful sobbing and excessive need for kleenex for at least thirty minutes. I was tuly stunned at the emotional release and found it difficult to believe that I had never grieved for Cinder before. But believe that I had not, and truly I did love my faithful companion and protector.

A few months following this profound and unexpected grieving event, I found myself in a situation in which I was in true, clear and present physical danger for an ongoing period of almost 6 months. A palpable energetic presence of Cinder unexpectedly became my guardian once again. On four separate occasions I had a vivid knowing that she was barring her teeth and standing firm with her hair bristled and growling low and fiercly at people who presented a real and present danger to me. None of these potential aggressors crossed the energetic line that, “Spirit Cinder” created for me. It seemed as if she slept at the foot of my bed during that period in her young, healthy body that had accompanied on all my searches for friends before I entered Kindergarten.

It is a privilege to honor Cinder in this space, thank you. (And thank you vey much Cinder, you are a good girl. I am glad that you liked the pillows that I made for you out of cut off pant legs and tolerated my putting eye shadow and decorated paper plate hats on you.) Much love Cinder.)

I read your story of Cinder, and look at the pictures of your furry family and my heart just swells and my eyes tear…I have such a love for animals. They have been my source of Love for most of my life.

In 1997 I went to a breeder/trainer to purchase a german shepherd puppy, but had no knowledge of german shepherds, so I allowed them to choose a pup for me. The one that was chosen for me would not have been MY choice but I figured they knew more about it than I did. His name was Armanni.

Armanni was never what I wanted. I wanted a brave, intimidating guard/watch dog. I wanted him to make me feel safe, protected at all times. He did not. I wanted him to bark when strangers come to my door. He did not.

I’m so glad I never got what I wanted but instead got what I so desperately needed, and that was pure Love. Armanni was all about love.

Armanni loved everyone and everything, even those I considered my “enemies,” much to my dismay. He loved guinea pigs, hamsters, birds, rabbits, babies, children, you name it he loved it and would shower them with his sweet, soft kisses. Meanwhile I’d be rolling my eyes and shaking my head.

Armanni had nicknames I had given him, and some of them included Stinky Butt, Big ole Butt, Butt Butt Butt, Stinky, macho names like that. One day I was sitting with him on the porch and said, you know, I think it’s time for a new nickname. You really don’t have a stinky butt and you never did, and your butt isn’t big. That isn’t a very flattering nickname. I think I should call you Woof. (aka Wolf but I pronounced it Woof) You’re much more like a wolf than a stinky butt. So Woof or Woofer was the new name for Armanni.

Woof was around 8 years old by the time I finally began to truly appreciate his beautiful capacity for love. I began to love him like I’d never loved any animal or person. I felt so much dread as he aged, though he appeared to age well. He never had the hip dysplasia or any health issues, hardly any gray in his face. I just knew in my heart that he would never reach 11 years old.

Sure enough, 3 months before his 11th birthday I had to have my Woof put down. I tried so hard to be brave for him and practically gagged on the sobs I was holding in as I stroked his face and ears, kissing him, telling him what a good, good dog he was and how much I loved him. I told him that I was going to miss him so much. I was talking very quietly to him and asked him if he could come and visit me. I said, I don’t know how you’re going to do it Woof, but could you please do it so I can see you? I don’t want to just think you’re around and not know for sure, I want to be able to see you.

I sat in my truck in the veterinary hospital parking lot with my windows up and cried so hard I screamed. I had chest pains but couldn’t stop, my heart was breaking. At the time I was separated from my husband and he was there with me during all of this, and tapped on my window. I put the window down and he asked if I wanted to come with him to his house that night because he really didn’t want to see me go home in that condition. I started crying again and wailed, No, Woof won’t know where to find me! I have to go home! He insisted that Woof would know where to find me and I went to his house.

That night I had one of those dreams that you KNOW wasn’t just a dream. I dreamed that I was sleeping and woke up and there my Woof was standing at the side of the bed with his chin resting on the bed looking up at me and wagging his tail. I woke up for real and was so happy because I knew he came to me in my dream so that I could see him as I had requested! After I went back to sleep I saw him again. For months I would cry all the way to work and all the way home and when it would get really bad I would ask him out loud to come to me in a dream. He would come. One time I remember crying and saying that it was so nice to see him in my dreams but I couldn’t touch him, stroke his big pretty ears like I used to. That very night I dreamed I was in a field by my mother’s house that he had played in before and there he was. Woof came running up and I bent down and was hugging him and kissing his ears and touching his ears and saying out loud, oh my God, I’m touching you!

My ex husband had voiced how sad he was that Woof was gone and how much he missed him, for how could anyone not. I suggested he ask him to come to him. A month or so later I asked him about it and he said no, he never came. I said no? Not at all? No, he grumbled. I did have a few dreams about him, but he never came to visit me. I was like, WHAT!! That was the visit!! He did come and visit you but he comes in the dreams!

Christmas eve I was sitting on a couch with my husband and glanced over at the other couch in the living room and there he was. I saw him as though he were alive and only 2 or 3 years old, young, beautiful and healthy. He was snuggled up on the other couch. I looked away with tears streaming down my face and when I looked back he was gone. That was the most incredible gift I have ever received.

As I wrote this I had to take a break to cry, and my female labrador retriever (whom Woof wasn’t too fond of) consoled me. If a dog could hug, she does. She sat so quiet and still, which is not her norm, as I held her and cried.

It has been since January 8, 2008 that my Woof left, even though I know he is always around. Sometimes when I am driving I feel like I could lean my head over and touch him, he’s standing right there. I miss him so so much. I know he is around me but it isn’t the same.

I look forward to the day he incarnates into another body so that I can be with him again. Thank you for allowing me to tell our story.
Sutton May