I have been going through some heavy stuff the last few weeks. The seemingly endless doctor appointments have kept me running and kept me from my cats. It feels like all I do is work and see doctors lately. (This is a slight exaggeration in fact, but not in feeling). My cats have been the calming presence. They are what gets me out of bed on the mornings when I just don’t feel like getting out of bed. I have written in the past about how my cats have helped me cope with Depression and Anxiety in Cats Help Improve Mental Health. That was stories of Crash, Sam and Muffin. They saved me from myself at some hard times. Thankfully Sneakers and Fuzzy George have filled the cat vacancies. I don’t know where I would be without them.
Fuzzy George and Sneakers have kept me grounded in the here and now. When my mind races ahead of itself, or focuses on things it shouldn’t be focusing on, the cats remind me there are things to tend to here. Mostly that they wanted to be fed five minutes ago, thank you very much. Even though they can add to the stress- Waking up to cats wrestling on the bed in the middle of the night is getting real old- they give so much more!
Cats are entertainment. When I come home after a very, very long day and want nothing more than to escape into mindless entertainment, Sneakers runs around like a goof demanding my attention. Fuzzy George causes mayhem and destruction if he gets bored, which is always a good reminder that I am neglecting him. Even my ferals look in the window to see what I am doing. Their constant need for undivided attention can seem annoying, but it is really a reminder to be present. To forget about social media, online shopping, reading the news or playing games on my phone. It is a reminder that my health issues will be addressed, but I cannot let them take over my life. There are important things here and now that need attending to.
Fuzzy George and Sneakers have also been a check point for me. I knew that I was stressed, anxious and overwhelmed. I didn’t realize how bad I was though, until the day I found myself getting annoyed at the cats for doing very basic cat things. Sneakers was begging for food and I told him to go away. Fuzzy George got into mischief because he was bored, I yelled at him for being so naughty. They both excitedly greeted me when I got home. I had a bag full of groceries and a fully bladder, so I told them to get out from under my feet (in a much less loving way.). Once I realized that I was letting my emotions and stress control my actions, I was so ashamed. I pulled back. I took some deep breaths and have really been focusing on self-care. I apologized to them, and being cats they simply asked me for more food.
When I have been down, they have soothed me. Sneakers sleeps on me at night, frequently soothing me to sleep with the rhythm of his purring. They are right there when I go to bed, piling themselves on me so they are both touching me. It is so comforting. Looking at them both snuggled on the bed, content and at peace with the world is so good for my soul. They remind me that I am loved, always; I am not alone. I have to keep fighting my fight and making myself healthy for so many reasons. I strive to be the person my cats think I am, even when I am yelling at them.