As many of you who read this blog regularly know, Roxie and Jean Claude have two residences: my house and my daughter CCL’s house. CCL was to pick them up from my house Thursday night. Yet as I write this blog Roxie is watching the computer screen intently, perhaps trying to see what I write about her and JC. Yep, they are still here. Although still is not the operative word. Yesterday morning they were fighting like cats and dogs. I say dogs because Jean Claude , a black Bombay, thinks he’s a dog. It was quite a fight – lots of running, leaping screeching, meowing and clawing and fur flying everywhere, mostly Jean Claude’s. Roxie is pretty feisty. Still?? Earlier this morning I went to get one of my winter tops out of the closet. The tops are usually stacked neatly on top of shelf in the closet but Jean Claude has a habit of pulling them out as if sorting them for something to wear. Sure enough, tops scattered everywhere on the closet floor and a sky blue velour top I like is no where to be found. There I said it. Sorry JC now the world knows your secret. JC also knocked down a bag containing CCL’s jewelry wrapped in plastic and began playing with the plastic . He then went to get him something to eat and demanded (by patting on the front window blinds ) I raise the blinds so he could see out the front window. So despite the clothing and jewelry fetish, Jean Claude is all male. In fact he spends a great deal of time in his cave.
Monthly Archives: January 2011
The last two lines of the poem “Invictus” by William Henley are:
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.I have a copy of this poem in my house since I’m a Delta. But the last two lines are lines that everyone knows. I thought of this because Azeena has me addicted to a game called Harbor Master. The point of the game (which is played on a touchscreen device) is to guide ships in and out of the harbor safely after they have docked and unloaded their cargo. In the beginning it’s easy with few ships, but as you get further into the game, ships come at varying speeds and you need much better navigational skills. As harbor master, you’ll have a lot going on.
With cats, there’s always craziness at the house. Anyone with more than two cats will always have some story about something turned over, broken, peed on, scratched, chewed and the list goes on. But while you can’t control the cats, you can control your response. You are the master of your fate. To often we feel like we are trapped by circumstance, when we are trapped by our own inability to feel like we can act. You can’t guarantee the outcome, but you can have the choice. For example, if you don’t like your job you can quit. You might not be able to find another job, but at least you won’t be in the old one. If you are in a relationship that isn’t working out, you have the choice to leave or change your behavior. The other person may not respond the way you want them to, but you have a choice.
In fact, the only area of my life where I am NOT the captain of my fate is trying to keep Roxie out of trouble and Jean-Claude inside. Cats are animals that you can’t master. I have mastered responding to their signals for “feed me now” “play time” and “change the litterbox” so maybe they are truly the masters of my fate.
They say sadness often arrives before change. For some of us it can be a welcome even comforting feeling in that the grief, the denial, the hurt we buried for so long hoping for a different outcome is finally released. With sadness we are set forth in a sea of change. Sometimes it’s change that’s causing the sadness but we have an opportunity. We can become courageous. Change is often for the better. The journey to its creation is sometimes filled with tears, misgiving, regret and then hope, clarity, insight, growth and action.
Do cats have memories of the past? You can teach animals new tricks through either positive reinforcement (i.e. giving them a treat when they do something right) or negative reinforcement (punishing them when they do something wrong). Study after study shows that positive reinforcement works much better and creates better memory than negative reinforcement. And this is true of humans too! If you want to really change and influence behavior reward those behaviors that you want to see and people will keep doing them. But I digress.
Very often in this new world we’ve created we don’t take the time to look back. We don’t have the time to reread old journals, look at old pictures and remember the good and bad times and how far we’ve come. I was cleaning out my email a bit and I found my stash of poetry I had from my college days. It took me back to so many memories and allowed me the perspective to see where I’ve come today.
You have to know where you come from to be able to know where you are going. It’s ok to change direction. Maybe where you came from was to the east and now you want to go west. You can change. Don’t disparage where you came from either. It allowed you to be in the position you are today. If Roxie had never been found in that bush, she wouldn’t have been in the shelter to tap me on the leg and to keep me up at night because she’s mad at me.
Roxie was sick for a time and had several prescriptions. I or CCL would give her the medication in her food or treats but the joke was on us as she always discovered the hidden pills and ate them anyway. Now she’s better and while the vet wants her to stay on medication for a bit longer, Roxie’s not having it. Drama queen that she is she no longer willingly take the pills without force and much drama and hollering. Here for pet lovers and pill givers everywhere are instructions on “How to Give A Pill to A Cat.”
|How to Give a Pill to a Cat
1. Pick cat up and cradle it in the crook of your left arm as if
2. Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind sofa. Cradle cat in
3. Retrieve cat from bedroom, and throw soggy pill away.
4. Take new pill from foil wrap, cradle cat in left arm holding rear
5. Retrieve pill from goldfish bowl and cat from top of wardrobe.
6. Kneel on floor with cat wedged firmly between knees, hold front and
7. Retrieve cat from curtain rail, get another pill from foil wrap.
8. Wrap cat in large towel and get spouse to lie on cat with head
9. Check label to make sure pill not harmful to humans, drink 1 beer
10. Retrieve cat from roof of neighbor’s shed. Get another pill.
11. Fetch screwdriver from garage and put cupboard door back on
12. Call fire department to retrieve the cat from tree across the
13. Tie the cat’s front paws to rear paws with twine and bind tightly
14. Consume remainder of Scotch. Get spouse to drive you to
15. Arrange for Humane Society to collect mutant cat and call local
How to Give A Dog A Pill:
And there were lots of things that went on last year. Azeena has been pressuring me to blog but I keep forgetting that I can blog through email. That’s much easier for me. So recently, Roxie went to the vet. She’s a natural born trouble maker but we still love her anyway. Roxie will always get herself into trouble whether it’s running outside and down the street but all we can do is try to protect her best we can and help her get herself right when she does get into trouble. However, she will be getting health insurance ASAP!
Both of the cats are extremely different (which if you’ve been reading this blog you can tell). Jean-Claude is relaxed and chill and very smart. He can go outside and will merely knock on the door when he’s ready. He’s also a loving cat, but likes to do his own thing. Roxie on the other hand has a need to be around her people. She follows me and my mom through the house and at night must be snuggled in bed next to either CCL or Azeena (depending on whose house she’s at).
We haven’t talked about it on the blog, but recently both CCL and Azeena started new businesses. We’ve both been navigating through the ups and downs of taking on the new challenges a business creates. It’s a great experience for learning both about yourself and about other people. to make a business successful ultimately it comes down to what can you give your customers and has nothing whatsover to do with you.
Roxie is at my house. Jean Claude is with his mom, CCL. Roxie got sick again and this time the veterinarian prescribed three different types of medications for her. In fact Roxie now has a profile at the CVS pharmacy and her name is on one of her prescriptions. She seems to be coming around but clearly she misses her pal J.C. She’s a little less noisy and fussy than she was when CCL brought her by the other day. Also Roxie has made it clear she wants her laser toy …and she is not a big fan of wet food. Diva.
I found myself in a pretty deep conversation with a friend about people’s motivations, fears and sense of self. We are both good at promoting products, people and issues. We agreed that a spiritual foundation is necessary for personal growth. Now my friend and a lot of my friends have pretty fabulous lives filled with yachts, riches, celebrities etc but they still find time for church, God and self reflection. Roxie, the Japanese bobtail and Jean Claude, the black bombay who share residences with my daughter CCL and me, have pretty fabulous lives too. Yet they find time for deep thought and are always ready to move to another level of understanding.