Today, I give thanks for my animals.
I am thankful for my 14-year-old Australian shepherd, Stormy, because he teaches me to smile no matter how I am feeling. Even in his or my darkest moments, he has bright eyes and a smile that warms my heart and makes me laugh. People from all over the world write me to express gratitude for his words of wisdom.
Stormy says now, “It is important to see yourself as a light. The brighter you express your light, the more beings are affected by your radiance. If you feel dark, shelter yourself. It only takes a few moments to rest and allow the light to radiate again. Everyone has light in them. Some people ignore it. Be the light.”
I am thankful for my gray cat, Serafina, because she teaches me about friendship and forgiveness. She always wants to be friends with others. She rubs up against the dogs and asks my other cat, Makia, to groom her. If they ignore her and walk away, or swat at her, she turns away and tries another time. She never takes personally another’s unwillingness to interact. She has an enormous amount of compassion. She is the first to arrive at the scene of trauma, offering her love and support.
Serafina says, “I feel that beings need friends to feel complete in their life. If you give love to others, you receive love. It may not be at the exact moment you give it, but eventually you do receive it, and that is a wonderful reward. I love being caring, because it makes my heart feel good.”
I am thankful for my blue and gold parrot, Seamora, because she teaches me to enjoy the wild animals of the world. She gets me thinking about the domestic wild animals that are mistreated. She brings color into my life.
Seamora says, “There are people who love parrots because they are pretty, and then there are people who love parrots and want to give them a habitat that they are comfortable in. I wish there were more of the latter.”
I am grateful for my poodle, Luca, because he reminds me of the miracles of the universe. He is a reincarnation of my wolf-dog Maia. He teaches me everyday that life continues and that we are always progressing in consciousness. Life never ends.
Luca says, “Sometimes it is hard to learn, and I feel a resistance inside of me – an inclination to keep doing things the same way. But then I have insight, and I feel it is best to use my mind and heart in more intelligent ways, and then I find that my life is happier. I am always learning. People are similar to me. I love life, and that is important.”
I am grateful for my white cat, Makia, because she teaches me self-care and the importance in believing in one’s beauty. She is constantly grooming herself and looking in the mirror. We don’t normally think of animals in this way. She is a reminder to me that I can enjoy feeling good about my outer appearance, and that it is not necessarily being vain. She prides herself in carrying herself well at all times.
Makia says, “The way you look is a statement about how you feel inside. Even when I feel sick, I make sure I am well groomed, because if others look at me and believe me to be healthy, then I have a greater chance of attracting health. This is not to say that I don’t ask for help when I need it. Look beautiful at all times, and beauty will come to you. Everyone should feel that.”
I am grateful for my bunny, Bean, because she gives me pure, innocent, childlike joy. Every time I see her and pet her, I feel like a child.
Bean says, “I think my mom feels like a child because I have a peace about me that is enjoyable to others. I love nature and I love life. I love my food and the way the sunlight streams into my room. I love the feeling of dirt on my paws and the mist of the sprinkler outside. I love simple things that people often forget to notice. Life is special. Enjoy every moment. I have learned this.”
I am grateful for my Appaloosa sport horse, Jubilee, because she gets me out of my head and present in my body. She is a big horse with a lot of energy, and I have to really concentrate on my body language and my steps – in order to be a good teacher to her and to keep her feeling safe and calm. She is also bringing something back inside of me that I lost as a teenager.
Jubilee says, “There is so much in the world to learn. I have to learn about horse behavior, human behavior, and how to control my own behavior. Having a person I can listen to helps me become a better horse and understand my world better. I am Jubilee, and I am a champion.”