We have two cats and two puppies, the puppies are new. It took one of our cats a while to get used to the new creatures in their domain. Our pampered felines had a run of the house and were the masters of their domain. Every inch of their world was at their beck and call until those unruly canine beasts arrived right before Christmas. The first week our puppies arrived I found Buschi sleeping in the living room in an empty box that was stuffed with dirty towels. The towels were warm from the sun and out of the reach of puppies. He spent two afternoons there basking in the sun and ignoring his new drooling relatives. Despite the change he found a way to get closer to it, even if it still allowed him to do it his way.
It has been interesting over the last few weeks watching our cats adjust to the change. Buschi has rubbed noses with the pups and even played a successful game of tag that as a cat, of course he won. This bold fellow will come into the room where the puppies are and walk around, find a high space and just watch them be puppies. He has even gotten within inches of both pups at the same time. Artie, our other cat, has been much more cautious. He has spent weeks in seclusion upstairs sleeping and pretending that nothing has changed. It has only been this week that he has ventured downstairs during daylight as if the arrival of canine siblings had somehow turned him into a feline vampire. Artie has been much more reticent to admit anything has changed let alone to accept it.
We all face change and react differently. Depending upon the change we can be enthusiastic, excited, or even joyful…as well as rude, distant, spiteful and down right cantankerous. Is the change being done with us or to us? And are we for it or against it? Is the change temporary or permanent? Do we have any control or does the change mean we have totally lost the life we have known? The only real constant in life is change. Whether we like it or not things will always change. Watching our cats adjust to this major occurrence in our home and made me think about how I handle change. Am I Buschi or Artie? Do I somehow jump right into what’s new or do I hide out for weeks trying to figure out what is really happening? Or is it somewhere in between the two?
This has been a big change for our entire family and we are working together to get into a routine. I must admit I admire the way Buschi found a way in the first week to at least dip his toe into the water and be around what was happening. Even if it was sleeping in a box full of dirty towels, at least he was trying. Once we realize we can’t control change we either get on board or go another way. I think that box was Buschi’s way of being around without being involved; it gave him a way to be warm and safe while he adjusted and accepted his new reality.
If you are in the midst of change, take time to think about how you are handling it. You may not be ready to jump right into it all. You need to give yourself time to adjust. Maybe all you need is to sit in a box for a while to get used to what is happening. Get warm, get safe, take a nap and know that when you wake up you will be better prepared to handle whatever is going on in your domain.