One other time I had heard the sound of a fawn in distress, so when I heard the bleating this time, coming from somewhere in woods, I was pretty sure I knew what it was.
As a teacher, mom, yoga guide, energy therapy worker– it is often my job to help. But sometimes, I know, the best form of help is to not get involved. And in the woods, many experts say it’s best to let nature take its course. Let it be. And so that’s what I did. I let it be.
Until the crying stopped. And time went on. And eventually there I was in the lower field. And there she lay in a wet part of the woods, injured, with other signs that I won’t detail here that she was in a desperate state.
As I looked at her, barely able to move, I hesitated, considering again letting nature take its course. But then my nature got the better of me.
Whitnie gathered a blanket, made a nest in a big enough box. Kaiti arrived home, hearing what was going on. Standing in the garage. Hushed voices calling friends….what do you feed a dehydrated…. Where do you get a bottle… What are the signs…. A flow of texts coming in: “Hang on, I’ll make a call.” “Here’s the number, call her…” Until finally…
“Hi I’m Kaiti. I have a fawn.”
It was Judy who answered- a voice that picked up at 9:30 pm and said, sure, bring her over.
Kaiti drove. We talked on the way about the conflicting opinion of not getting involved in nature. Then we talked more– that maybe dropping our house in the middle of their world was involvement that somehow gave us a bit of responsibility beyond what we’d have if we stumbled upon a fawn in untouched woods.
And so here we were, taking Fawn from our yard and bringing her 45 minutes through back winding roads to a little garage with a grandma waiting for us when we pulled up.
Judy said it didn’t look good. Yet Fawn had a good pulse, and when I wiggled the bottle into her mouth, she drank. Judy said it seemed she’d been attacked- the blood, the bite marks. And she wouldn’t have survived had we not stepped in.
And maybe that’s how the story should have ended. But it didn’t. So the story goes on…
We left Fawn in Judy’s care. She was going to give her antibiotics for her wounds. And pain killers. I gave Fawn a little Reiki prayer. Kaiti soothed her with her Kt softness.
On the way home, Kaiti and I talked again. Stories of “remember when” came up. This middle born was the daughter there the first time we found a fawn. She was a kindergartener. She dialed help as I held the fawn in my arms keeping a dog from getting it.
The ride home seemed shorter than the ride there. We felt a little lighter. A little better. The question still hung in the air if we made the right decision to step in and help. One thing we knew, though, was If we made the wrong decision, we did make it with good intentions. We made it with love.
Love. That’s what the evening was about, I realize. As we drove home, slowed down to wait for a passing train, Kaiti said, “I want to help like Judy does.” Then she went on, “And….I want the kind of friends that you have, that I can call who will know what to say when I find an orphaned, hurt deer.”
Of course, there’s more there that she’s really talking about than deer knowledge. It’s the feeling you get when you know you have a team who’ll swarm around you when you need them. Who are true and honest and down to earth enough to answer a call on a late Tuesday night and tell you to get a calf bottle and some goat’s milk. And then follow up the next morning asking how the fawn fared.
That feeling that if you are in distress, and you put out a call, someone will answer. Maybe not that moment. Maybe they will wait til it’s silent and they’ll poke about to see if everything is alright. And if it’s not…they won’t just let it be.
Love. It’s our nature.