I swore I wouldn’t, but I did. I read the blog, curious as to see what he would write after our little tete-a-tete.
It was pretty much as I expected, but I was surprised at how much it stung, anyway, all things considered. And I had this big “thing” built up in my head about how I was right, and he was wrong, and I could prove it…blah, blah, blah…
…and as I was walking this morning, I realized that it didn’t matter. It just didn’t matter. Nothing I could say would ever change his opinion of me, or change the condition of the cats, or do anything productive whatsoever, and then the most wonderful thing happened. I let go because I realized that it just didn’t matter.
And, as I was with the cats last night, I realize it’s becoming easier to forgive him. (I thought I had it all forgiven, really, but..how often do I fool myself!) Mardi Gras is the skinnier of the two. She hides and hides and won’t come out to eat for more than a minute, especially when she knows I have medicine for her.
The folks are storing furniture in half the garage. There’s a turned over table, a couple of stuffed chairs, etc., all in different positions. There’s a tarp that covers all of the stuff put together, and both cats hide between the furniture.
Last night, I discovered Mardi Gras’s ultra-secret-gotta know the secret knock-for-entrance hide out. And she let me pet her. She’s so horribly shy and nervous, and she let me pet her. I had the brilliant idea of moving food to her, under her little table, so that she could eat it while “sheltered” and I would just watch to make sure the other one let her eat it.
She ate and ate and ate.
I saw the horribly ugly fluroescent green blanket-thingies that were “freebies” given by the ex with the cats, which are, I must admit, incredibly, incredibly soft. I put that in the ultra-secret hiding place and, after having cleaned up the food and mess, popped my head under the tarp to see if she had found it.
She had, and what’s more, I saw her do something that I don’t think I’ve seen her do since she was a wee, wee kitten, sleeping between my ex-husband’s legs: she was sucking on the blanket. When she was little, she’d make the happy feet, purr so loud it’s a wonder that the house didn’t shake, and suck on her sucky-blanket.
And she was doing that while I pet her, with her full, tight belly.
And while I’m not sure that I’ve completely forgiven him, I was so overwhelmed with gratitude in that moment to be able to see her so happy she was like a kitten, purring and sucking her blanket and demanding to be petted that nothing else mattered.
I went to a seminar by Chris Chenoweth in Mobile on Sunday. He defined true love as “unconditional commitment to a flawed person.”
I LOVE that definition. That is such a rich, thick definition for as few words as it is.
And, for all the times my dad said that I should give up the cats, they were too much trouble, he didn’t understand why I was so selfish for wanting to keep them when they deserved a better life elsewhere (ouch!), I didn’t have the right response for why they were so important to me. I could just answer “but they’re my cats” and give some blah-blah-blah about them being from my marriage.
At the time, it was the best answer I could give. Because I don’t think I understood it myself. I didn’t have the vocabulary to express what I really meant. I loved them, sure. But just loving something isn’t enough.
But now, my vocabulary has been expanded. And I now know exactly why.