Today while at the beach with some friends, we came upon a seal on the beach (pictured above) that appeared to not be doing so well. It’s generally strange to see seals on the beach here as they tend to stay on the rocks except to pup. Anyway, we thought about what to do and the issue of Truth came up here. What’s the truth of the situation, and what do we do about it? As I sat near the seal, I sat with that question. What arose was the fear of my own mortality. The desire to save the seal was primarily seated, I believe in the discomfort I have with recognizing that I am going to die. Once I saw that I was more able to just be with the seal and not feel so strongly that I need to fix it. I did call a friend who works for the State Park here and he was going to send a ranger out to look at it.
As I write now I recall the most truthful thing about the experience again has to do with Love. It was the love that I felt for the seal. I sang him/her the song Dr. Doolittle sang to the seal he rescued from the circus as he said goodbye to her at the sea – “When I Look in Your Eyes.” There is a line near the end of the song:
“In your eyes
I see the deepness of the sea,
I see the deepness of the love,
The love I feel you feel for me”
which I think really opened up the truth of the situation. Not that I believe the seal loved me, but at least in that moment I loved that seal. He watched me closely as I sang the song and closed his eyes as I finished. I’m sure it was the first time for this creature to be sung to and I can only sense from reactions that it was actually a soothing and trust building experience.
I’m not sure what is going to happen to the seal, but my hunch is that it will be dead by tomorrow. It just didn’t seem well, kind of fidgety. I had held fantasies of bringing it home and putting it in my bathtub and feeding it herring. So what is the truth here. Is not helping the seal to any greater extent a cop out? My heart actually wants to sit next to it and stroke it’s fur and sing more to it. I don’t think I’ll do quite that but I think I’ll head back out there and sing a little more to it and then come in for the evening.
There’s a little more to this too I guess. The song is one my mom and I sang together in the week before she died from cancer 9 years ago so it’s a song I deeply associate with her. Yah, now I’m getting close – as I ruminate on that, I can see that right now, in a way, I’m practicing letting my mom go without fighting the truth of her situation. There, I think that is at least closer to the truth. Bye mom. It’s OK for you to go. Bye seal my friend. Thanks for spending a few sweet moments with me.
“Autumn comes, summer dies,
I see the passing of the years in your eyes,
And when we part there’ll be no tears, no goodbyes,
I’ll just look in your eyes.”
3 replies on “When I Look in Your Eyes”
That was heavy. I didn’t know the part about you singing that with your Mom. >>I had a similar, but slightly different take on that event. The truth was, for me, that maybe the scariest thing is to die alone. I really wanted the seal to know he wasn’t alone – I wanted him to know that someone cares whether he lives or dies and would prefer that he lives. >>I was a little worried that we might make him uncomfortable, but I sincerely believe we brought some comfort. He didn’t seem frightened and made no attempt to get away from us or warn us off.>>In my head I know the odds were not good for that seal.>>In my heart, I choose to believe that he recovered and swam off to be with his seal friends.>>Schrodinger’s Seal here for me. I’d rather not look in the box, but this nagging part of me would rather know the truth. >>So if you know, please let me know what happened to the seal.>>I’d like to know what Rachel felt about it all.
Funny how we each have different experiences of the same event. I too am interested in what Rachel saw and felt.>>I did go back out to the seal that evening and hung out with him/her through the sunset. Sang a few songs. When a wave came up and washed over the seal his stood up as best as a seal can, cupped his right flipper and slurped sea water out of the cup. I think he was dehydrated. Upon seeing that, I ran back home, got a can of tuna fish and two tupperwares full of tap water. He wanted nothing to do with any of it or me. I actually think I scared him by trying to get the food/water close to him. >>I told him I’d be back the next morning, but I got busy and neglected to go. The truth, if I really look into it, is probably closer to my not wanting to go back out there to find the dead seal. He was shivering some when I left him so I can only imagine that the evening was hard on him. The following day there was no sign of the seal. I have a feeling he died.
Funny thing – if Rachel had gone down to the beach the day before, or if for some other reason, we had decided to not go down to the beach, we would have seen the Blushin’ Roulette’s and not shared this experience at all.>>Or, we could have just stayed safe and warm in the Sea Sanctuary.>>But unless we know otherwise, it’s still Schrodinger’s seal for me. Could be it was better off in the water and the tide took him on out to sea where he fully recovered and went on to…>>OK, you’re probably right.