Monday, February 11, 2008

A Reflection on Cats

Funny Pictures
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Funny thing about cats. Johnny Cat is in the bedroom prison -- and not wanting to escape. It seems that he's scared of Old Woman Cat. Old Woman Cat is definitely not taken with him -- she's actually drawn blood. Johnny has a nice big gash on his face that abscessed and drained; not pretty. He's scared to death of her. Of course, Old Woman Cat likes the kitten food and has discovered that we keep a nice big bowl of it in our bathroom. So she digs under the bedroom door until she can open it (really need to adjust that strikeplate; too easy to open) and then chows down. Of course, the kitten food is going to kill her -- too much protein and salts.

Somehow, this all reminds me of church. (Big surprise, right? My husband tells me that I look for theological meaning in everything. He may be right.) It's the "older members of the church" vs. "the young whippersnappers" dilemma. Those who want to change vs. those who want everything to remain exactly the same. We've had multiple cats before; we even have integrated new cats in an existing cat household. It can work. They even ate from the same bowls and I was able to find a food that would nourish them both. But I am wondering if that is the exception rather than the rule. How do you integrate a young active cat into a household that has a grumpy old kitty? I've done it by enforcing very rigid boundaries. Is that what it takes? Boundaries and patience? They are finally almost able to tolerate each other's presence in a room; Johnny is wandering the halls. I use a little kitten food to "flavor" the old lady food and both seem to enjoy it. Johnny is growing and I am supplementing his diet with vitamin "crunchies." It's probably too much to hope that one day they will nest together -- but I can hope. Of course I'm an idealistic optimist. It's my greatest strength -- and my greatest downfall.

I could just give up, I suppose. There are certain people in the household who LIKE to see them fight; who pick sides and root for their side. "Yeah, Johnny! Get her across the face!" In fact, I think sometimes that's our basic human nature. But it's not going to lead to peace in the household. I think I will then just remain faithful and patient. Watching and waiting for the Kingdom.

And, by the way, I don't think I was talking about cats here.

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