Animal-Speak: Remembering Ted Andrews
“Hurry up! Look outside!” shouted my husband. There in our backyard stood a large buck. He was as tall as a pony, with bright white spots and tail. His antlers were magnificent. (The numerologist in me now wishes I had counted the points, but I was too surprised at what I was seeing to think of it.)
I quickly closed the blinds on our picture window — I was visualizing the news stories about deer jumping through storefront windows. I didn’t care about the chaos that would ensue in our house, as much as the harm to the deer. I realize now that I was having a typical human reaction to this deer, and there was never any danger of shattered glass and a wounded animal. This deer came to us at a very special time.
As I peeked from behind the blinds, he caught a glimpse of me – or so it felt. We stared at each other for a split second. He was as calm and cool as could be. I stood and watched as this magnificent being slowly turned and disappeared into the trees behind our house.
Many of you may be thinking, big deal – she saw a deer. Well it was a big deal, because my husband and I don’t live in a rural area. We’re in a neighborhood that has lots of birds, squirrels, dogs, cats and Rocky the raccoon – no deer.
Animal Spirituality tells us that when an animal comes to us under unusual circumstances, there is a message to be gained. I pulled out my Animal Speak book by Ted Andrews (Llewellyn Publications, 2005), who is one of the foremost experts in animal energy and wisdom. The book said, “deer take us into the wilderness for new adventures.” Ted mentioned that in the tales of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, Sir Gawain’s deer hunt took him to wondrous and exciting encounters.
The next day I heard the sad news that Ted Andrews had died. Ted grew up in Dayton, and I have always admired this fellow Buckeye and his work. He has taught us about the wisdom of animals, and has given of himself for animal welfare. I had the good fortune of hearing him speak, and he kindly and humbly autographed one of my books.
When it comes to Ted Andrews, perhaps the deer that came to us expressed it best – magnificent and graceful, with a knowing in his eyes. Ted also says that deer represent gentleness and innocence, and a visitation signals a “gentle luring to new adventure.” I’d say the deer was right.
Thank you, Ted Andrews, for all you have done in physical form, and for all you will be showing us in spirit.
Please honor Ted’s memory by sharing your unusual animal encounters, and what they meant to you.