Bootsie Teaches Me Important Reiki Lessons

My relationship to Bootsie has also been especially close ever since we first made eye contact while I was mall walking almost fourteen years ago. There she was in the pet shop window, an adorable 8-week-old tuxedo kitten, playing with half a dozen or so other kittens. When I stopped to look at the kittens, she stopped playing to gaze at me and I gazed back. We bonded in that moment, like Super Glue.

Bootsie enjoys snuggling up next to my head at night and curling up on my lap during the day. When I need to be away home for several days, she develops separation anxiety. She is very much a one-person cat, although she been developing more trust in my Partner.

So when Bootsie suddenly became quite ill a week ago and had to be admitted to the animal hospital with a fever of unknown origin, I was upset and realized how frightening this experience must be for her. I regularly offer Reiki to my cats, dogs, and chicken flock. Now I turned to Reiki to complement her medical treatment. I didn’t know how it would help, only trusted that it would. At first.

When the fever broke the second day, her recovery looked promising. But Bootsie continued to refuse to eat or drink, even when I tried bringing her home for the weekend. She became dehydrated and lethargic, leading to emergency readmission Monday morning. Now my trust in Reiki was put to the test. I was becoming the proverbial basket case, worried sick about Bootsie.

Just as the team of veterinarians was doing a “differential diagnosis” to rule out some conditions and consider others, I realized I needed to take a look at my Reiki practice, how I was making myself sick and what I could do about it.

First, I realized that I had my own agenda: Reiki SHOULD cure her illness and according to my time table. I wasn’t trusting the intelligence of Reiki to work where it was most needed. Second, my worry was incapacitating me and wasn’t helping Bootsie. How wise Usui Mikao was to make “Do not worry” one of the Reiki precepts, and I saw and felt the fear that was at the root of my worry. Fear that I would lose Bootsie. In fact, I was acting as if I had already lost her, a superb example of how fear is an illusion.

With these insights, I was able to let go of my baggage and offer more effective Reiki. The veterinarians and staff at the animal hospital have been receptive to letting me visit Bootsie in a treatment room during the office lunch hour, offer her Reiki, feed her by hand, and reassure her with my presence.

Gradually Bootsie is showing progress. Today they are going to try her on a small insulin because of elevated blood sugar. This morning I did a distance treatment. This afternoon I’ll visit, offer Reiki, feed and love her.

My lovely little tuxedo cat may be home in a couple days. Meanwhile, I trust she is getting excellent medical care. And I trust Reiki as a beneficial complementary treatment that works in often mysterious ways. Thank you, Bootsie, for being such an excellent Reiki teacher. I have learned some valuable lessons in becoming a better Reiki practitioner.

Diane Anderson

4 comments to Bootsie Teaches Me Important Reiki Lessons

  • Camille Pukay

    Thanks for sharing your story with Bootsie. She sounds like an amazing teacher for you. I’ve also used your story to challenge how I think as well so she’s a teacher for whomever looks…an exceptional cat you have!

  • Thank you for sharing that it is very insightful. I think everyone kind of loses site when it is their loved furry one( I know I have) and expects that “Reiki SHOULD cure the illness and according to my time table”. It is so important to take a step back as difficult as it can be. Bootsie is a wonderful teacher and trust is an amazing lesson to learn.
    Love and Light to both of you.

  • I’m sorry to report that Bootsie took a turn
    for the worse. She was ultimately diagnosed with pancreatis. For whatever reasons, she would not or could not eat, and had to be hand
    fed. She had ups and downs, but progresively weakened, and finally died at home two days after Christmas. I know Reiki helped soothe her during her illness. Ultimately, all mortals must transition. I miss her deeply.


  • Camille Pukay

    Oh Diane, so sorry to hear this! Offering Reiki love to both of you.

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