Beginner's Heart

the author’s

Hector (our ‘new’ cat) came downstairs! And it’s only taken a scant 6 months!

Seriously — I was wondering if we would always have an ‘upstairs’ cat. He has shown very little interest in exploring downstairs. At least, not while we’re awake.

Since he’s more than 1/2 as large as either of our French bulldogs, it’s not that he can’t hold his own. But one of Hector’s myriad appeals is that he’s a lover — a beta cat, not an alpha. He likes to roll over on his back and have you pet his belly. Fear isn’t a word in his vocabulary. But inertia, and easy-going? Both of those certainly are.

All my (numerous) cat-loving friends assured me, months ago, that Hector would come downstairs and interact. Eventually. But frankly, I gave up months ago, resigned to only being able to visit w/ Hector upstairs, on his terms.

Until today, when he came downstairs, and one of the dogs chased him onto the bar counter. Where he sat for almost 1/2 an hour, surveying the territory. With, I might add, great aplomb.

I’m not patient. Anyone who has the slightest acquaintance w/ me will agree — it’s not one of my virtues. So Hector is — as most things that occur in my life are — a metaphor. A reminder to let things unfold in their goodness of their own time. My clock doesn’t necessarily keep the time of others. There is a good reason different cultures carry names for their diverse ways of seeing time and schedules.

Still, I’m hoping that today’s appearance is the beginning of a cat who does venture downstairs — it would be nice to have the big lug sit in my lap while I’m reading, and not just walk on me when I’m trying to sleep. I’m ready. It’s time.

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