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Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Dolphin Experience

I just finished reading an article about a high priority investigation by NOAA regarding the death of a large number of baby dolphins along the Mississippi and Alabama coasts. Read more:  I thought about these magnificent sea mammals and the Dolphin Assisted Therapy (DAT) program that I had encountered years ago. DAT is a form of therapy treatment for children with disabilities. The dolphins interact with the child and somehow stimulate areas of the child’s brain that were previously underused. The child is often better to communicate and express himself after several sessions with the dolphins. I remember being so excited about the possibility of my son, Antoine, being accepted into the two week program in Key largo, Florida.
After several calls and letters with the DAT team, we were invited to visit the compound in Key Largo for them to determine if Antoine would be a good candidate for the program. Spiritually, I knew that Dolphins vibrated to the vibration of 6-love and emotions. They would be good for him; I was more concerned about how Antoine would react to them. He could be over zealous on occasions. Additionally, the program for the 2 weeks was very expense.
My sister, who lived in Miami, helped me to drive to Key Largo.  Upon reaching the compound on one of the hottest days of the summer, we were instructed to be extremely quiet when entering the area where the team was working with the dolphins and another child. Of course Antoine didn’t heed their instructions. When he saw the beautiful clear blue water, he let out a scream that sent the two dolphins into a dither and disrupted the teaching session. We immediately turned around to leave the area as Antoine continued to scream and try to get into the water. Looking back at the water, the dolphins were mimicking his behavior and Antoine started to laugh uncontrollably. The more he laughed the more the dolphins performed for him and making their own unique sound. It was a sight to behold.
Apologizing profusely, we tried to make our exit as the leader of the team hurried after us. To our surprise, he asked us to stay.  He had never seen the dolphins react to a child with such energy. We did stay and Antoine got a chance to be with the dolphins. There was this instant and strong connection between him and these loving creatures.
The team accepted him to the program that August. However, he was also accepted to a new school that I had worked hard to get him into. There was a scheduling conflict between the two. I had to make a choice between the DAT program and this special school. I chose the school. Looking back, I wish I could have worked something out. The DAT program closed down for awhile.
I will never forget the short encounter between my son and the dolphins. His screams and their sound made beautiful music. They understood each other. He was communicating at a much higher level than the spoken word. 
With stillborn baby dolphins showing up on the coasts, this might be the time for us to ask ourselves what words, actions and thoughts are we putting out in the universe shutting down life? Dolphins symbolize the breath of life.

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