Life Lessons Learned from My Cats

It was a cold winter night when my then boyfriend (now husband) came home after having a few beers with the guys from work (one too many…) with a beautiful black kitten he rescued from a shelter on his walk (stagger) home!

I make him sound worse than he was but truly he was a wee bit tipsy and giddy when he arrived at my apartment with Rita in tow.

Here’s the thing about love, it makes you do silly things. Things you may not have ever done yourself without falling in love with this particular person, like become a cat lover.

Fast forward thirty years to a sad Saturday morning when we said goodbye to Pepper, our beloved cat of 22 years. It was heart-wrenching. She lived with us longer than our son, any time she got sick she bounced back. Until she couldn’t or it wasn’t fair to ask her too.

It was weeks before I stopped reflectively checking the spot where her food dish was to see if it needed a top up. It was months before I felt the desire to fill the lingering quiet in the house.

One Sunday my dad called and asked if I was ready for a kitten. I was, Andrew wasn’t. Without his blessing, I said yes to my father about taking in a super friendly kitten that showed up at his door and two weeks later I was driving home with Tinkerbell in the back seat.

She was friendly, cuddled between us nightly watching Netflix in bed and she purred, holy cow she purred like no cat we had ever owned before.

She was happy. I was happy, Andrew was happy (although he wouldn’t admit it).

And then the morning of her vet appt I noticed how chubby she had gotten in the 10 days living with us.

Yep…

You guessed it; she was pregnant! One week later she had a litter with five kittens, all of whom we fell madly in love with, deciding to keep two ourselves.

 

 

Between momma and her two kitties, this last year has been a whirlwind. An endless battle between me with the squirt bottle and them strutting across my counters, using the furniture as scratching posts and thinking the window screens are for scaling like a mountain.

They have also infused our home with joy, laughter, love and lessons about life.

 

Here’s what I have learned:

1- Be curious. Too often we go about our daily life in a robotic way, doing the same things in the same ways with the same people. Take a different route to work, cook a new recipe, explore a nearby village on the weekend and for heaven sakes ask questions about things that interest you or that you’re curious about.

2- Make time to play. Today at my fitness class the instructor used a set of dice that indicated the time allotment and exercise we would do when one of us threw the dice. The workout was intense and more fun as we moaned, groaned and teased each other after our roll. For me play time might be Saturday mornings dancing in the kitchen to my 80’s tunes as I clean or thrift store shopping with a friend to see what gems we find.

3- Napping is NOT overrated. Personally, I am not a napper, but I certainly enjoy and brag about getting a full 8 hours of sleep nightly and on occasion 10. Sleep is essential for a good overall healthy life, if you can catch a cat nap during the day go for it!

 

 

 

4- Ask for what you want. Wishing for our success, desires or goals does little for the outcome. While I’m all about a positive mindset and dreaming big, it’s action that seals the deal. How often have you left money or opportunity on the table because you were too shy to ask for what you want?

5- Be persistent. If there’s one thing I have learned about life it’s that timing is everything. Don’t give up, be persistent. If at first you don’t succeed try and try again. Believe me, where there is a will there is a way!

6- You are worthy. Of love, affection, forgiveness, friendship and success. We all mess up from time to time. Our path isn’t straight, and our life isn’t meant to be perfect. Allow yourself to see the beauty of who you are the way our pets do. You are enough, you are worthy.

Reminding ourselves of these truths as we make our way through life can be a challenge. Sometimes we lose touch with our true identity, our authentic self. This is my personal invite for you to join Who Am I Now? a place and a chance to rediscover YOU! The woman you are meant to be.