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I see you

I had a best buddy a few years ago – Seamus. Seamus was my jogging partner, my co-host when I entertained, my confidant. He was fun, filled with life, and endlessly entertaining. He was always there for me, and I was always there for him.

Seamus was an Irish Terrier. When he died of bladder cancer, I felt as though a large part of my insides disappeared, leaving a huge gaping empty hole.

Next door to my house lives Luci, short for Lucipurr, a pitch black cat with green eyes. Whenever Luci is outside, she runs to greet me (and every other neighbour), demanding attention for as long as I’m willing to provide it.

Both Seamus and Luci know how to connect with me, and with every other living thing around them. They are so sensitive to whatever and whoever is there, attuned to their world in an exquisite way. We humans are so lucky to have these animals in our lives – they teach us the value of true connection.

When I connect with Seamus or Luci, I meet them for who they are in that moment, without any judgment – and they meet me in exactly the same way. Their connection says “I see you!” to me in ways that no words could convey.

About a hundred years ago, an Austrian psychiatrist, Martin Buber, wrote the book I and Thou. In it, he spoke of the relationship he’d had during his childhood with his horse. He spoke of connecting with his horse, feeling and sensing the vitality that was not his. He spoke in particular of one day when he was with his horse, feeling completely connected to this animal: the exact moment he was distracted momentarily, his horse immediately sensed his disconnection and moved away.

These lovely non-human creatures we are blessed with in our lives can teach us the true essence of connection. They open our hearts. They gift us with vulnerability. They see us.


Quote of the Week

It is an absolute human certainty that no one can know his own beauty or perceive a sense of his own worth until it has been reflected back to him in the mirror of another loving, caring human being.”

– John Joseph Powell, The Secret of Staying in Love 


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