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For the Love of Animals

Growing up dinners were meat and potatoes. Salad was a side dish. Tasteless iceberg lettuce leaves. And a dalop of bottled dressing. That is how it was.

Now my dinners are salads. Deliciously accessorized. With dried cranberries. Raisins. Almonds. Mandarin orange slices. Chopped apples, carrots and broccoli. The leaves are now spinach. Sometimes, its dabbed with dressing. Homemade.

Truth be Told-My Version

Writing an article of this nature was inconceivable 20 years ago. But personal journeys are too compelling to ignore. And this is one begs to shout out.

Lifetime habits and media marketing convinced me that our bodies would wither without protein. And meat was the only way to get it. Learned behaviors followed. Even raised my adult kids to follow suit. Hotdogs filled with animal beaks, feet, organs, skin. The left overs. The stuff that grosses us out. The jerky and pepperoni sticks. Then there was that Oscar Meyer Wiener Song. Still have that song stuck in my trained head.

Honestly I tried to cut down on meat consumption. “Try” is a word that means “Failed at”. When a spouse is a carnivore. When your children want to fit in. Foregoing meat is asking for a peer reduction. Now, it’s perhaps not as radically alienating as previous times. But people still raise eye brows when saying you don’t eat meat. It’s like announcing you are moving to the Arctic Circle. As in: Why would you do that? Lunch and dinner invites dwindle. It can make others feel uncomfortable. Often friends think us vegetarians are judging them. I don’t. Everyone has their own path for what is right for them. And I tell my friends this often. Even for other topics outside their meal habits.

For the Love of Animals?

My family of origin and the thereafter LOVES animals. We are fanatical about our four legged fur friends. We coddle, hug, and love on our pets. And adamantly claim our love for all animals. Then sit down to dinner and eat one. Somehow we justified this. Because it came wrapped pretty in cellophane. The true story of that cow we ate, was ignored. It never happened. It was easy to separate our fur babies out from those who really kept us alive. I began to wonder. How could I honor my own animals and not these others? Wasn’t it logical to have the same reverence for all animals? This challenging thought began banging around in my head.

Learned habits do not make conscious connections easy. Conduct has its own mindset to which we apparently are puppeteered. Once I entered solo living there came space to examine a whole lot in myself. Such as? My habits. Entrenched learned behaviors. False beliefs. And, ah–yes, robotic thoughts that lead to all that.

Really. I had longed to not eat meat. And. There was no more blaming a family that I no longer had. Morally, intrinsically it felt wrong to cannibalize another living being to use its “protein” to gratify my body. I mean: What was I thinking. More so, what had I been taught?

The Dawning of Differences

As I aligned consciously I began to taste differences. Namely between organic and store bought meats. The latter tasted plastic. As if fed filled with growth hormones or worse. I was aware of feedlots as a child. Specifically when my parents drove by that section on Highway 90. Staring out the back seat window I was horrified. Cows in dung filled lots waiting. Eating their own feces. Waiting some more. I wondered if they knew. It hurt my gut to look upon them knowing. And yet I ate meat. The veil pulled back over my eyes. As long as I chose not to see them as conscious living beings, cow eating was not a sin.

Human consumption of meat is voracious. And, nowadays at an all-time high. Meat animals are now processed no better than fast food. I often wonder if animal souls stand beside their abused bodies while waiting their execution.

Okay. I know about now I’ve lost readers. Maybe even some friends. But know this: I do NOT condemn anyone for the choices they make. I have many meat eating friends; including my children! Does that make them bad people? NO! Truth be told, I fall of my soapbox once in a blue moon. Evolution takes time. Rome was not built in a day.

Benefits Behold

While pursuing meat free sainthood I discovered amazing side effects. Namely for my health. A plant based diet afforded me far more energy than I ever imagined. Also, clarity of mind. Regular intestinal flow. Okay I’ll say it > BMs. Additionally, I by pass doctors. Haven’t seen one in years.

And to trump popular opinion, it IS less expensive to eat fruit, veggies, nuts, legumes. You’d be surprised where protein can be found in foods. Once I no longer visited the meat counter a whole new world of other foods appeared. Its abundant and plentiful.

World Concerns

Growing animals for food is not earth sustainable. The amount of land rape to accommodate harvesting meat has severe consequences to our climate. The sheer non-logic of what humans do is nonsensical. Humans are genetically designed for a plant diet. Why use an intermediary animal to process plants that are designed to go directly to us? Nowadays animals are not eating proper plant nutrients because they are abused for consumption. Pumped with hormones and faux foods. What is natural about this insanity? Do you realize growing plants vertically in buildings consumes far less resources and land?

The Contrast Continues

Sometimes I think animal consciousness will rebel and co-conspire to poison the human race. But in fact, it is humans who are doing it to themselves via an inhumane model!

This is not one of my touchy-feely blogs. It’s blatant. I own it. But I do hope its enlightened you to eat less animal meat. Or to buy organic if possible. At the minimum bless and thank the animal you eat each and every time. After all a bit of good intention trumps none at all. 😉

Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.
No reprints or copying without permission of the author, Patty Ann.

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Our Beloved Horses: Their Passages Through Grace Reveals Blessings

There are days among our ordinary lives that become extraordinary. Transition points. Defining moments. Miraculous and blessed.

One yesterday morning a year ago, I aroused from a deep sleep to slip right into a slice of heaven. My being was filled with love. So encompassing. So endearing. So awakening. I just basked in it. Soaked it dry.

I have had many of these amazing moments. I will tell you they are far better and beyond that of any earthly pleasure. These portholes open gently. Graciously embrace and swaddle with pure unconditional love. Waves of nirvana, happiness, freedom wash through every cell of my being. And with it comes a certain eternalness of knowing it comes from elsewhere—and another; most certainly from beyond. Definitively this slice of heaven is sharing what it’s like to go home.

Thereafter, I got up carrying this moment of bliss. It was 5am. Because my thoughts were about JD- and Lily, I looked out to the barn and listened. All was quiet and undisturbed, so I decided to go back to bed and sleep a bit more. Finally woke up at 8am. Showered. Put Mr. Orbit and Lunar outside as I went to feed my two horses.

I threw hay in the stall mangers. And as always, did a morning scan for good health. Horse habits you know. JD was outside against the paddock panel fence. Not coming in for breakfast to which he is always awaiting with a whinny greeting.

Concerned, I walked out to him. My heart sank. He breathing was labored and he was listless. It was serious. I put his halter on and walked him out to the arena behind the barn. He didn’t want to move. I went to get a thermometer. When I got back he had progressed to shaking. Mucus came from his nose. Instantly I ran in and got my cell phone and called my vet. It was JD’s time. I surmised, once he saw me it was okay to let go. And die.

It was 9:05am and the vet office said they were closed. So I rang through to the emergency number. I got a call back within minutes from their newest vet; a young, competent gal.

It started to rain. I brought JD out of the arena into the barn’s open carport. He had few steps left in him. I assured JD I would help him out of this life and into the next, soon. He just leaned his head into my chest as I stroked his forelock and his ears. Tremors shook him. His head drooped. Labored breathing, his legs posed to collapse. JD was having a seizure. The result of a 9 month vigil with old age end stages. Lymphoma had slowly consumed his body although initial blood tests indicated all functions were normal.

I knew then that early morn slice of heaven came from JD. I know firsthand when great pain comes, our consciousness leaves our body behind to do the physical work. JD sent his love to me while he could; still had the presence of earth energy to do so. This was not my first time to feel this type of trans-formative energy. I thought once again: how reassuring that our consciousness is able to crossover first, leaving the body to finish earthly transitions in a lucid trance-like state.

The vet came ready with the injection serum pre-measured and loaded. Not ten minutes later JD lay quietly at our feet. Immediately injected, JD succumbed quickly. Right where we got him to take his final few steps. A spot right in front of his barn, where the truck later could pick his body up easily. And where Lily could see him in the adjacent stall and pasture 20 feet away.

I asked this new vet if she had ever seen a soul leave a horse’s body that she put down. She thought pensively. “Once,” she said. “Straight after putting one down, the herd of horses began following something, maybe the soul body. The herd left the carcass behind.” I revealed I could see-perceive soul transitions. An interesting conversation ensued.

She asked me what to look for. Told her that on larger animals I saw the body double. As we talked I began to see JD ‘double’. I explained what I saw to her. She tried to see what I saw, but could not. I told her everyone perceives very differently. I happen to see-perceive the “body breathing”. This body doubling was my way of knowing JD’s soul was still attached to his physical self. He was not quite ready to exit his body, even though his body continued to die organically beyond that of his expired brain and heart. Our bodies are still organisms that even though clinically dead continue to live in many ways. Even up to- and through decomposition.

The vet waited with me as I talked about vibrational energy; a rich energy field full of varied frequencies everyone is capable of tapping into. This young vet with technical know how, was receptive. I told her she possessed a gift she could share to ease her clients concerns during these tough moments. Most vets are too occupied with the clinical aspects. That a bit of transition knowledge would not only help a client, but their horse as it crossed over. By putting grief aside momentarily, an owner can help release their horse graciously. With focus on sending it pure love. And, by appreciating and thanking their partner for sharing their life with them; including this ultimate and final lesson. Beloved animals still hear their loved ones-and even more so in this transition state. What a wonderful way to send a treasured friend off than to gift it with love and release, while suspending one’s own discomfort and grief—and beliefs.

I continued to see JD’s ‘breathing’. Witnessed his ethereal head raise twice, only to relax back down. We waited. I told her that animals, much like humans, pick their death times as well as their soul departures. In fact it could take hours or minutes to transition. I closed my eyes and asked when. My guides answered back: “Just You” “Subtle” and “Awhile”. I understood. This made sense.

The vet had another appointment and didn’t want to leave. Yet, her obligation presided. Her attending JD was no coincidence. Previously I had seen-envisioned this conversation at this juncture with one who was to be open-minded.

After the vet left the sun came out to create a perfect spring day with a slight breeze. I took up the task of clipping JD’s mane and tail hair off. Carefully banding it. Placing it in a box. I knew his soul was still present; breathing. I told JD he could cross over anytime. I led Lily out to see him, but she didn’t. Often horses ignore the body once dead. She gazed past him. Then ate grass nearby.

Lily appeared fine with the status of her long-time soulmate. She grew accustomed to his sick moments over the last months, often separating off from JD on his tired days. An innate survival instinct. I put her back in the pasture where she could visit from 20 feet away. And she did throughout the day.

I didn’t know exactly when JD’s soul body would transition. I did know he’d tell me, somehow. His energy did not feel ‘full’. This made sense as the larger part of him—his conscious self had transitioned early that morning. The residual left behind was his soul essence. Interesting concept to entertain. That his source self had split his energy in two parts: his conscious mind and his soul body.

Most of us, including myself, think of the soul and consciousness as being one and the same. I’ve come to know and recognize that free will deems how we wish to be born; and how we wish to die. It is a comforting thought when thinking about loved ones who endure a physically harsh death. That the pain body can be left to do the outward work of dying, while their consciousness, the larger part of them is set free.

Decidedly I would call the pickup van to come out in a few hours. Surely JD would transition fully by then. My phone lit up the numbers 11:11am. Perfection. When I am aligned with spirit, double and triple sequences of numbers show up. Four ones validated my ethereal listening skills. The transport gal said they couldn’t come out until 4pm. Another perfect time, that allowed no rush.

JD’s soul was still parked inside waiting. I set about major stall and barn cleaning. It took awhile. As I finished up JD’s stall I stood outside of it. Looked over to his body wondering when. From the left a black dog walked quietly, with head low right up to JD’s back. And sniffed. It was my crossed over TOBY! Of course! Toby’s grave was only 30 feet away in the garden. He looked straight on at me. I said in my head, “Toby, can you show JD the way? He needs some help. Please?” And, Toby perked up. His tail wagged. His ears went up. He put on his slap happy grin with his tongue hanging out that showed anticipation for a job to do. And then he disappeared. Toby had always shown JD and Lily the way ahead, blazing all the trails we rode together.

I resumed cleaning outside the front of JD’s stall. There was scats of hay. I was sweeping the granite dirt floor clean. My mind was empty. It was then at my right elbow I felt a huge quiet presence. I looked up to sense JD’s celestial body, a bright translucent light was shining large. I looked over at his earth body. It appeared abandoned. My earth brain thought momentarily. And entered a doubt because I had been waiting a long time for a hint. And then my eyes caught something outside JD’s stall door; in the paddock where I found JD that morning. On the top rail of the bright red tubing of my corral panel landed a black raven. I didn’t recall ever seeing a raven on my property. It looked straight at me. Squawked at me loudly! As if scolding I should know better. JD had sent it to validate that he was indeed out: FREE. As soon as I acknowledged this truth the raven flew off.

JD’s transition had been for “Only Me”. And it was very “Subtle”. I would have missed it if the vet, or any other, had been near to distract me. And it also took “Awhile”. I looked at my phone it said 12:39. These numbers made sense too. A sequence of 1-2-3. The 9 is a completion number.

The day was warm. It had a very slight breeze. However, after JD transitioned the breeze turned into gusts so strong the trees bent and swayed. My one stall with a wood door was flapping wildly, so much so I had to secure it shut. My yard came alive. Nature seemed to be manifesting ONLY on my property. I went over to JD’s body. Around him there was NO wind, yet his spot felt terribly odd. Like his body was the silent eye of a swirling vortex that surrounded the both of us.

I was impulsed to walk out to JD’s paddock. I looked into his deep 100 gallon water trough now about half full. And stared at it. The water was sloshing back and forth. Like the winds would rough up ocean waves in a fury. Yet, the tall trough sides should have shielded the water down inside it—but it was tossing about. And then I asked, “JD are you playing with the water?” He use to dip his full head in his trough to splash and slosh the water out almost emptying the bucket. And, then with that thought released, instantly the water waves died down to calm. The winds that had come in swiftly, disappeared just as abruptly. JD’s spirit had talked to me because I was listening.

I spent the rest of the day doing driveway weeding. There were times I looked over at JD and saw what Lily must have seen earlier: nothing. I did not see his physical body. I was fine being totally alone on his final day. Where I could receive JD’s messages. I did see him standing in random places for a few seconds here and there. The horse next door, part of the herd of 3, whined for JD off and on for the rest of the day. Lily only whinnied back at their friend once. She didn’t whinny or fuss otherwise.

Four o’clock came and so did the pick up truck. It was a one ton with a high box bed, a tail gate that dropped to the ground, and a winch. A gentle middle aged couple came to pick up. JD’s body would be buried on their neighbor’s property overlooking the Rogue River. He provided the land and had the equipment to bury. A smart joint venture. They said he used his graveyard pasture for his cows to graze as the grass grew rich. It was perfectly fitting for JD, my old cow penning pony.

Lily knew something was amiss. Was eyeing the truck. But as I chatted with this lovely couple, Lily got rather bored. Accustomed. They started hoisting JD into the truck so I went and got Lily and took her out back for a walk. She knew. Understood.

We stood watching the truck drive off to the east down our gravel road. Do you know what appeared? A precisely well placed rainbow rose high and arched wide over the road JD had just traveled while leaving. JD’s Rainbow thick with colors landed in the fields on opposite sides of the road! One that did not go unnoticed. It had caught my neighbor’s eye while driving home on our road, as she mentioned it was surreal and appropriate. Coincidence? No. Nature is perfect and complete.

I put Lily in JD’s stall. Truth is, they both used this stall a lot. It was their hangout spot. I fed her and stayed with her as the evening crawled in. Lily seemed to accept that it was just her now. I walked to the house. JD’s ethereal body was standing at the driveway gate. He had followed his body out to its resting spot, then his soul returned home.

I looked back at Lily. She was not eating. Instead she was looking intently out in the pasture. Her reaction was the same as the day Toby emerged in his spirit body. Lily recognized JD. She was not upset, rather mystified with JD’s new look. She started snorting and blowing through her nostrils at full attention.

As dusk came Lily started missing JD. For the first time Lily persistently called out with loud ‘Where are you?’ neighs. This went on for ten minutes. She was distressed. Then Lily fell silent. I am positive JD returned and stayed by her side all night. Because my property felt full, not empty that night. And Lily never let out one whinny again.

The prior week had been restless. I felt a change was imminent. The little signs were constant. JD had been happy, resolved. Comfortably so. He did his routines. Ate well every day. Had his normal afternoon nap. Ate heartily his meal the night before. His last three weeks were without any visible distress. Infested with cancer, yet JD had done well on the probiotics administered; better than I could have imaged or expected. It almost gave me false hope that all along it could have been a low grade colic. One always hopes. Denial comes too easy.

I did get one wish. That JD just surprise me one morning. And that was exactly the case. But more so, I wanted to be there for him. Witness, feel and be present with the miracle of his transition. JD and the heavens above blessed me with plenty.

I slept solid that night and woke early so I let Lily out in the pasture at dawn. She went to her friend, who met her at their fence line. The mares touched noses. It looked like they were having a long JD chat. They resumed eating grass together, on opposite sides of the fence the rest of that day.

That day I cried, some. Mostly from the burden of pent up stress from the last 6 months knowing. JD leaves one stall empty now. And a huge vacancy in the barn. Yet, I felt him outside everywhere for months thereafter. 27 years young he flew from his physicality back into the energy fields that surround us.

I met JD when he was 4 years old. That day I was helping a friend select her next horses. After riding JD, young and green with a sharp mind, I recommended to my friend: buy him. Twenty one of those years JD flew under my wing after my friend dispersed her herd and gifted him to me a few years later. JD had an uncanny common sense. Cow sense, people sense, horse sense. Yet, he could have easily ended up at an auction; slaughtered for meat. See, JD came with a rearing issue after bullying my friend and those who desired to ride him. I took him on because we were meant to be. And told my friend, she would not recognize him in two years. He just needed a leader to follow.

JD proved to be an excellent parade horse. In fact loved it. On parade days he preened as he waltzed down the procession corridor. Often leading our group carrying the American flag, no less! He excelled as a gymkhana competitor: a valley champ, 5 years running. Proved himself again after 6 years off; turning heads as a newcomer in another state where I relocated. He was a trail horse extraordinaire. Calm, thoughtful, careful. Irreplaceable. And, mostly, always he was family. One with bold character. JD was territorial with animals he didn’t know. Charged and ran out bears feeding off his apple trees. Yet gentle to the chickens, dogs, cats and other critters who belonged to me and my close neighbors. Horse camping. Poker rides. Springwood Ranch weekends. We had a great life. He was the black and white pinto pony I always coveted. The one I would cut in line to ride at the pony ring at Seattle’s Woodland park zoo when I was five. Who knows, maybe JD reincarnated into the larger version to become my dream horse come true.

Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.
No reprints or copying without permission of the author, Patty Ann.

If you enjoyed this article a suggested similar ebook is: ABBA: Life, Love & Letting Go

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A Miracle Recovery Follows Our Great Grey Owl “Accident” Encounter

Out of the treeline it flew. Into our 60 mph path. Wanda reacted. Slammed on her brakes. A great mass of feathers skimmed her truck’s front grill. Then elevated to smear our windshield with it’s head smacking its beak on the glass. Surreal, time stood still. Both of us were aghast knowing we had collided with a beautifully massive Great Grey Owl. Wanda shrieked the horror for the both of us. It was unimaginable. Just as it hit, its fan of feathers slipped, as if wind swept, sharply from the glass. And splayed out on the road behind us. All I could muster was, “Stop the truck” which my friend was already doing. Thank the good Lord no one had been behind us—or within sight. I jumped out. And ran. We were on a remote mountain highway, after kayaking all day at a hidden lake. I could not handle the thought of this raptor perishing under the wheels of the next vehicle.

The owl’s enormous wings were splayed wide across the opposite lane. Its body stunned quiet. Its claws coiled into balls. I had to get it off this road. I had never touched an owl before . . . just admired them from afar. Its feathers were a twisted heap. It was alive. Barely. I didn’t know for how long. His eyes were catatonic. The beak open. The tongue hanging out.

Carefully, I took each wing back to its body. Did a quick scan. Picked it up as a mother holding her fragile infant, also cradling its head. My arms swooned around to protect it. To ward off any pain. And brought it into the womb of my chest. Wanda caught up after parking her truck safely. She said to watch the talons as they could be very dangerous. I acknowledged, but gave it no other thought.

The raptor lay quiet. A full armload. Snugly, I secured it close. Sending it heartfelt energy to recover, even though I had little hope. For as substantial as it appeared, its weight was less than 5 lbs. This being was feather rich in a light body. It would take a miracle to bring it back into this world.

I told Wanda I was taking the owl into the woods from where it came. So we trekked inland about 200 feet. I relaxed down to sit on a log and gently swayed the ailing owl back and forth. I could not let it die without love. His body gave him no choice, but to submit. After awhile he pulled his tongue back inside his mouth and closed his beak. His eyes still dilated now stared.

We had no words. We both sent it healing, loving energy. And waited. I continued to lullaby rock nature’s finest in silence as if it might soothe. He began to move its head. His feet stirred. One eye pupil contracted; the other not so much. A rim of red circled that eye. There was blood on one of his talons. The true extent of his injuries were still unknown.

A half hour then more crept by. Wanda retrieved a cardboard box from her truck. We decided it best to place him in it to see if he would recover himself. He eventually stood. And peered over the side of the box. Another half hour slipped by. He was panting as if hyperventilating. Yet he turned his head around cautiously both sides, with eyes open,  and more alert. He focused on me standing back. Several times intently. We looked deep into each other’s eyes and found a soulful resonance: of respect, and of appreciation.

We talked of calling the wildlife sanctuary several hours away for advice. But there was no reception. Discussed taking him in if need be, which felt futile-stressful to put upon him.

We both wished him to fly off, and said so. I envisioned him flying and sent him that picture. He revived a tad more. He was now blinking and turning his head around freely. I took him out of the box and placed him on the ground. (Pictured here.) He stood without wobble. Wanda’s medical background, and former aviary sanctuary expertise, was a godsend. Her skilled fingers worked gently to detect any fractures. And found none. Wanda picked him up, barely, and swoosh he flew off! His flight too impressive to take our eyes off. In our awe, we could not even reach for our cameras.

His four to five foot wingspan swept through the forest low, albeit back towards that road. He landed in a clutch of tree branches chest height off the ground. We went to find him well camouflaged, but not recovered fully. (Pictured below.) I broke the brittle branches away from him as he sat askew. Wanda placed his off talon back next to its other. I folded his wing back by his side. He offered no resistance. He flew to the ground. Wanda braced him, picked him up. He flew a very short distance landing under another tree on the ground nearer to the road. He was exhausted. It was clear he had a destination. Perhaps back to his family.

Our eyes met and interlocked again. With intention I promised to take him across the way. Around the thicket I went. Then approached from behind. Scooped him up. Cradled him close. He allowed it, yet wiggled for freedom. And then his body vibrated against mine as he clicked his tongue. I was elated for another sign of recovery. Securing him to my chest I walked the rugged terrain diligently. Then crossed the road.

On the other side he showed no interest in flying. He was spent. We placed him in a thicket of trees off the ground where he blended in with perfection. Now nature would do him best without the stress of us humans. Two hours plus, and the long shadows of evening were upon us. We gave him all any human could. We walked away knowing he would have a good chance, pending any internal injuries from his head bang. The rest was up to him.

I laid awake that night wondering. Kept seeing his big soulful eyes staring at me. Wanda later mentioned his affinity for tracking me. What was our encounter all about? Why did the three of us co-create this perfectly timed moment? Perhaps this owl longed to know human touch. Or, we needed a reminder of that frailty can invoke great resilience. I marveled the whole while I had held him. Appreciated his strength, his presence and purity.

There are no accidents. Only moments of divine timing, to which this event certainly qualified. I asked my spirit guides to provide some validation one way, or another over the next days. Like the feathers that had fallen from the bird-less sky lately. The second morning thereafter I rode my Lily quietly out in my back pasture under the vast open sky. Our horse-human connection once again revealed. At several intervals, a variety of bird flocks emphatically graced the heavens above. Resolve. Freedom. And strong health were resonating thoughts surrounding our owl.

The rare presence of a Great Grey long suggests abundant spirituality, wisdom, intuition, power and strength, and that transitions soon prevail. Our Owl was sent to impart a sacred, eternal message. This was not a “chance” meeting.  Our encounter beckoned a reciprocal trust. A connection between two species deeply inter-dependent upon one another. That there was indeed great significance in our alignment as complimentary, yet equal beings. Each vital. And every one of us is integral to this web we call life. Another reminder that every action we choose to enact, affects not just one other, but the whole. And individually, or as a collective, WE can choose to perish- or thrive.

This essay is now a lesson plan with integrated activities. Check it out HERE!

Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.
No reprints or copying without permission of the author, Patty Ann.