Reiki for a Semi-Feral Cat In a Hurricane

Grady on a previous visit, all curled up on the sofa!

The storm named Irene swept through Long Island with powerful winds and pelting rain. I was awakened at 4:30am by the sounds of no electricity, meaning the air conditioner and fans had turned off and the house was getting uncomfortably warm.

By 8:00 am, it was light out, if you could call it daylight, as we were enshrouded in a dark, ominous cloud. My own pets were all fine, as they are indoors, but I was concerned about my little semi-feral outdoor guy named Grady, a little kitty who showed up about a year ago in my yard.

He is a small, skinny kitty of grey and white coloring — his feet tiny little white “boots” and a symmetrical white “v” shape of fur on his chest. I had not seen him since the afternoon before the storm. And the side street where he often crosses to come to my property had become a temporary canal. But suddenly, there he was on my window sill, a bit soggy, but waiting for me to open the door.

He popped in, had his breakfast, and as is his custom, wanted to go out. Now, I’ve always honored his freedom and let him out when he so desires, and that has created a wonderful bond of trust between us. However, I was determined that I would not let him out during the very worst of this storm.

He went and stood on the sofa, forlornly gazing out the window, wondering how he might escape through this venue. Then he went to the back screen window and I watched carefully to make sure he didn’t start to scratch the screen with his extremely long claws. “Grady, you can’t go outside right now. It’s too dangerous for you.” He did not panic, but then plopped himself sternly down in front of the back door, where he always exits, his petite head gesturing up for me to open the door.

I had just received a warning text from my daughter, “Torrential downpour arriving within 30 minutes” because she still had power in her apartment and was watching the news coverage. That text message made me ever more determined to keep this grey and white feline safe indoors, even it meant that he was a captive for several hours.

“No, Grady, you need to stay inside for a few hours just today.” He stretched up, as long as he could make himself and placed his paws on the doorknob, trying to figure out how he could turn it to secure his release. “Grady, go lay down now. Go into your house and lay down.” There is a “house” at the bottom of the cat tree that stands in the dining room (which is where the back door is) which he occasionally will nap in.

He was not happy at the moment, and stood on his little rug — an old bathroom mat which has become a comfort spot for him, kneading it, and obviously trying to decide what to do.

“Grady, lay down and I will give you Reiki if you like.” I sat down several feet away on the floor, crosslegged, my hands on my lap to let the Reiki flow freely. He looked at me inquisitively, but somehow knowingly, and I think he picked up on a sense of what I was offering him. He slipped into the little house and curled up, eyeing me. “I promise I will let you out later,” I assured him.

I allowed myself to move into the stream of Reiki, and let it flow around me and out to Grady in the little house. Within a few minutes, he relaxed into the energy and his eyes closed peacefully. I sat in that position for perhaps just twenty minutes and the little feline was then fast asleep in a lovely Reiki slumber. I was hoping he would remain that way for at least until the torrential downpour has passed, but amazingly he slept very soundly for many hours. By the time he awoke, the worst of the storm has passed. I gave him a midday snack and then let him out, which I’m sure was a bit of a relief for him. But I was grateful to Reiki for helping me keep him safe to weather the storm.

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