Countless times I have said that my early years of caregiving were filled with resentment, confusion and anger. I was an unwilling participant. I did not choose this path, it chose me. I was too stressed, too busy and too pissed off to notice kindness, much less benevolent symbols, wisdom and communications that were auspiciously showing up to help me.
Then the coincidences and signs were happening more frequently. The proverbial bricks upside the head were also becoming more painful. The messages sometimes landed with side-splitting humor, sometimes cryptic, sometimes with profound kindness that would bring me to my knees. The Universe was getting my attention.
The following is a true story.
A few months ago a very old and dear friend of my mother's passed away from Alzheimer's. He and my mother had known one another since 1st Grade. They grew up together and he had very fond memories of my grandparents and our cabin at Lake Tahoe, to the degree his widow asked if his cremains could be scattered on our property there.
H-U-H ?? WHAT? Enter the sound of an old record player's needle coming to a screeching halt.
We delicately declined her odd request. Of course we did. However, she persisted, and in rather contemptible ways. Each time we patiently and kindly declined.
About two weeks later, our on-site cameras caught the wife scattering his ashes around our property anyway. We were sickened and offended. My first order of business was to get back to the cabin and clean up the property the best way I could.
During this crappy task, I stood up to stretch my legs. I looked up and saw a large young buck quietly standing maybe 25 feet away from me. Even more remarkable was the fact he was standing directly on one of several sites where the cremains had been scattered.
“Well, hi there,” I said quietly, “What are you doing here?” This stag just stood there. Our eyes locked and in that moment, all sound seemed to cease as if I had just plunged under water. I held out my hand, but he didn’t move. His presence felt gentle and resolute.
A few moments later, he turned and slowly walked away through the back lot. I watched him take a few steps. He then stopped, turned his head towards me and our eyes met again. He then calmly turned and walked away. The normal sounds of life returned, and I went back to work with a knowing that I was doing the right thing – cleaning up an unwelcome circumstance.
What Is True For Me:
When something as obvious and out of the ordinary happens like this, I am relentless in my quest to find meaning in it. A friend looked up “symbolic meaning of Stag,” while I referred to my Native American Medicine book for “Deer.” Here is the gist of what it said: “A Stag is ‘King of the Forest’ and protector of all other creatures. Stags are viewed as an animal of power, a messenger/totem that represents protection of domain with sensitivity, intuition and gentleness. Deer symbolizes harmony, happiness, peace, kindness and longevity.”
My take away was this stag’s presence and its meaning, land right on the mark. I felt supported in cleaning up our property and I know that all who are welcome at our cabin are protected against any unwanted, or uninvited energy that is not for the highest good of us all, woo-woo as that sounds.
On too many occasions, I have had phenomena happen that simply cannot be dismissed as coincidence. I believe I am cared for and watched over. I also believe everyone has a benevolent entity, or a team of entities, or angels, with them at all times. Furthermore, I believe we are offered symbols, indications or communications in all forms, at any given time. We just have to be open to them. We just have to be “awake.”
My message to you is to be open, stay awake, and be aware. There are gifts given each day, particularly when facing something challenging like caregiving or even cleaning up unwelcome cremains.
Teachers and lessons come in many forms, as does guidance and resolution for all circumstances.
*PODCAST of this story available in Forgive and Forget's Podcast.