I awakened this morning with a cat snuggling as close as he possibly could to me, head out of the covers and the rest of his body nestled underneath them. I thought about his journey to me, which I have no record of before he introduced himself by pulling my hand into his cage at the vet's office as I watched them untangling my beloved Australian Shepard, Pasha, from his IV's in order for me to take him home for his very last few hours with me. My Aussie was 15 and had valiantly hung in there not wanting to leave me alone. It was a difficult time in my life and I would learn later he had set up that the tiny kitten in the crate above him would be coming home with me in order to comfort me in my loss and be my next companion for many years to come.
As I attempted to follow the men carrying my old friend to my car, tears streaming down my face, I found my hand not only wedged between the bars of the kitten's crate but he was curled up in my hand, asleep. I didn't even remember putting my hand in his cage. I gently pulled my hand out from the impossibly tiny creature as he tried to cling to me, looking up with big eyes, clearly not wanting me to remove his warm bed.
I brought Pasha home and held him until his last breath a few hours later. This would be the hardest loss of my life next to my mother. As my thoughts had gone through my life with this amazing dog who had been the first animal in this life to communicate effortlessly with me, a thought of a little kitten kept creeping into my mind. I would shake it off and get back to focusing on my boy, telling him over and over how amazing it had been to be with him, that I understood he needed to leave and how honored I had been to have shared so much precious time with him-he had taught me so much. I knew he had to leave and I assured him though I would give anything to have him grace my life again, that I also knew he had learned what he desired to experience by being a dog. He had told me the first time I heard him communicate to me, who he had been in the past. The conversation went something like this;
Pasha was playing with a ball on his own, manipulating it perfectly with his mouth and feet always sending it in my direction wherever I was in the room for me to send back his way. I thought while watching him that he must have been a soccer player in a past life with the precision he displayed in manipulating the ball. He looked up at me, straight into my eyes and I heard,
"You were a human in a past life?" I thought back to him automatically.
"Yes". He thought back.
"Why on earth would anyone be a dog in another life after being a human given how poorly dogs could be treated by so many?" I asked. "Because there is no faster way to learn the lesson of unconditional love". He replied back to me. "Oh" was all I could think to reply as my mind reeled in the clarity of that. He then broke his gaze with me and went back to expertly handling his ball. That sent my mind spinning in so many directions of what we choose in lives and the reasons why. This dog had constantly let me know with just a look how indignant certain things were, such as being on a leash when just by breeding alone he would stick close to my side, never straying for another dog, cat or human unless I asked him to.
So here had been this little kitten who pervaded my thoughts and who I asked about the next morning when I brought the Veterinary office their IV equipment back that they had loaned me in hope that my beloved would have made it through the night. They told me this large feline soul in a little package had been found by some kids outside of their clinic, on the street by a couple of kids and brought in to them. They said he was available for adoption and was so very loved by them that someone from the clinic took him home every night. A receptionist brought him to me and he immediately curled up in my hands and fell asleep. She said that they had other kittens too and would I like to see them. I thought that maybe I should and see if I resonated with any of the others. At hearing me tell the receptionist this the little kitten awakened, looked straight up at me with this look of,
"Are you kidding me? I'm supposed to be with you!". I heard him loud and clearly and told her,
"No, evidently this is the one I am supposed to adopt." With this he put his head down and fell back to sleep.
"What will you call him?" she asked. At that I immediately replied,
"Socrates". Not having any clue why I would have decided on that name until I realized it hadn't been my idea.
So as I lay in bed this morning, with this sweet soul who had lived so many adventures already in his 11 years with me, I realized that the Universe had placed him in my path, decided upon and agreed upon with my soulmate dog so that I wouldn't be alone in what had been the most difficult time in my life. That the Universe had assisted him in being "lost" or given up by those little girls in something that could have been a very tragic tale of being separated from his mother and siblings just so that he would be in the crate above my Pasha only hours before he left the planet. Because you see, Spirit works this way. There truly aren't any tragedies, only adventures set up for our learning, experience and to place us in the path at the proper time, for our requested destiny. It's all our choice, we are victims of nothing, be it a dog, cat, human or whale. We place ourselves in locations and circumstances not only for our own learning but for the learning and growth of others as well. Sometimes precious beings sacrifice their lives so that we may grow as souls and understand that the cruel and selfish things we do that hurt others. An example would be of placing highly intelligent and sentient souls such as dolphins, in cement prisons simply for our entertainment. This being no different than the Romans placing slaves into a Coliseum to fight it out viciously for their entertainment. Many a dolphin and whale still sacrifice themselves in this way, a shortened life of torture and imprisonment so that we may become a bit more conscious as a species and realize the equal privilege all souls have in being incarnate. That we human incarnates are guardians of the earth not the dominant factor for frivolous disregard of another's inalienable right to exist in peace. The difference between humans and animals has been debated for centuries. The difference being that only a human has the desire to change his/her environment solely for the sake of edification.