One of my favorite older ladies that I take care of at work came back from the hospital a few days ago. This was the first time I had had a chance to see her, since she came home. She was out for almost a month.
For this post I will call her Lucy. (That “had had” looks wrong doesn’t it? but I think it is correct…)
Lucy has a beautiful multi-colored cat. His name is Bootsie, because he has white feet that stand out against the other brownish colors on his legs.
He is usually independent and not overly cuddly. He will come up to give me a quick hello, and then he will go and get on with his kitty cat business.
Lucy always told me that Bootsie slept in his cat bed on the floor and seldom slept in the bed with her. She wanted him to sleep on the bed, but he would come up for a goodnight petting, and then wisk himself away to his kitty bed.
Well, while Lucy was out, we were all taking turns to feed Bootsie and make sure he had water. I know the other nurses and aides were feeding him, but most of them were not really petting or visiting with him. Poor Bootsie…
Whenever I had that floor as my assignment, I always went in to visit with Bootsie. It was clear that he missed having Lucy around, and he was confused and scared about why he was alone all day and all night.
He became more affectionate as te days went on, and began to brush up against my legs and purr at me. I really tried to make an effort to go visit him and I enjoyed our little quiet visits as well. It got me away from the hustle and bustle of the facility for a few minutes, as I “hid out” in the room with Bootsie.
The other aides were giving him the dry food, but the cans of wet food, were still on the counter. So, I began opening one for him each night when I was working there on that assignment. Sometimes I would go up to that floor, even if I was not assigned there. i would open his canned food and to sit with him for a few minutes.
Whenever I went to see him, he would come up to me right away and talk to me in his kitty language. He would brush against my legs and let me pet him. I would sit on the kitchen floor and stay with him for 5-10 minutes or whatever I could spare.
Well, I saw Lois today and she was happy to see me. I told her that we had been taking care of Bootsie and she said that she could tell that we had been. She was very thankful for the care that had given her precious treasure.
Then she said to me that there had been a change in Bootsie, since she had come back. Bootsie, the aloof kitty cat, was now a cuddy and super affectionate kitty cat! He has slept on her bed every night since Lucy arrived home.
She told me that he laid next to her last night and was touching her face gently, with his paw. He has not left her side since she came home. When she leaves the room to come down for dinner, he runs right up to her when she returns to the room.
It is amazing how much our pets feel for us. They are kind of like people, in that we take each other for granite until something happens. Then it scares us a little and we realize that the person we love may not always be there.
We suddenly find time, where there was no time before. We realize that it is important to prioritize relationships in our lives. We have people (and pets) in our lives and it is important to show them that we care.
So, I thought this was a sweet story and I was looking forward to coming home tonight to tell you all about it.
Lucy is so happy that she now has a cuddly kitty!
But if Bootsie is anything like people are, the novelty will wear off and he will be back to sleeping in the cat bed again. We will see. Time will tell…
It is a good lesson for us to remember to appreciate the loved ones in our lives and not to take them too much for granite. That goes for our animals as well. It is easy to get busy with life and to overlook times when we do actually have a moment that we could take for someone else.
There is time to spend together, even if it is in small doses and there is time to let each other know how much we appreciate each other. Even a little extra time with out pet can easily be worked into our schedule.
So, go hug your kids and kiss somebody ! Give your pet a few extra minutes of time. It is good for you as well as for them.
It is not so much that we do not have the time, it is that we forget that time is precious. There is always time for kindness.