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The Fawn Named Dear One

By Elaine Smitha

One winter afternoon I strolled through the garden submerged under freshly fallen snow. To my surprise, I saw a young deer caught on the chain link fence, the earth beneath her clawed raw. She could have been there for hours, with no escape from her foothold.
Inner wisdom directed me to a house across the street where I would find a man working in his basement. Never having been to the house and not knowing who lived there, I hurried through light snow to my destination. Sure enough, I found a kind gentleman who upon hearing of the animal's plight grabbed his wire cutters and pliers to accompany me to the site of struggle.

While I held the fawn firmly, my neighbor cut the fence and released her hoof. Exhausted, she collapsed on the ground surrendering to the unknown, despite her genetic impulse to escape. Her bristled fur stood on end, electrified with fear, then gradually relaxed to lay again, a silky coat. Unable to stand, she dragged herself along the fence until she cornered herself. There, we left her to rest.
I called the Wildlife Department, who said, "Oh, it's only a deer. We don't handle large animals," whereupon I was passed to yet another agency. "Only a deer" rang in my head, as the seeming unimportance of life's struggle was met by the system. Something was dreadfully wrong with this picture. Again, I asked for divine guidance.

Quickly came the name of Louie Enos, a Veterinarian Equine Chiropractor. Though he lived and worked some distance away, I nevertheless phoned him. He rearranged his schedule and came right away and several times thereafter. Diagnosis­­torn ligament. He'd move her neck from side to side, and exercise her legs, but immobility, the tendons contracted until she relied on her knuckles for support.

As days grew beyond a week, we all emotionally bonded and I named the fawn, Dear One. After we got acquainted, her penetrating eyes looked on me squarely. I'd sit on the ground by her and lay her head on my lap.

On the 11the day, I found her distended body a short distance from where she bedded. This time, her injured hind leg was trapped under the fence, her still head stretched the other way.

"Oh no, you're not supposed to die," I cried out, as if my pronouncement could revive her. Her death rattle said, "Goodbye."
She knew better than I that she would never be able to run wild again and I honored her decision to leave. Her lesson for me was to trust and surrender to the unknown.

Three days after she died, the unusually fragrant garden was pregnant with awesome energy. Compelled to cease walking, I stood numb as I felt Dear One's spirit envelope me. My body felt warm, as her frequency of unseen light embraced me. I reveled in the sensation, wanting it to last forever. I was lifted high into the deer's spirit world, where communication is felt, more than heard. Transfixed by the extraordinary energetic field, I heard the messenger say: "You are greatly loved. Thank you for taking care of one of our own." With the surety that higher forces are at play, no matter what we may think, tears moistened my cheeks. In that extraordinary moment, I was changed.

An Indian friend knowingly nodded and said, "You've been blessed and given 'Deer Power."
The lesson was clear. I saw the deer's hoof caught in the fence as a metaphor for how we humans hang onto the past. Unable to let go and move on, our flailing motions indicate the struggle. Digging heals into the ground as recalcitrant children, we attempt to come to grips with situations and, our emotions, but fear keeps us harnessed to the fence of indecision. It's all about insecurity. Pain absorbs us to become a way of life. We'd rather suffer than risk. In adapting to the environment, we find strength and peace, there all the time.

Yes, I know what it is to hang onto the past. But, my life came back to me, when I let go.

Copyright: Elaine Smitha 2002

Elaine Smitha has published numerous articles in magazines and newspapers over 25 years. She is host/producer of the popular Pacific Northwest TV talk show EVOLVING IDEAS©, http://www.evolvingideas.com, motivational speaker, and CEO/President of Webworks. She can be reached at 360-491-3714 or elainesmitha@evolvingideas.com.