December 4 – Wonder. How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?
baby Katniss playing
The discovery of Katniss has been and continues to be the greatest sense of wonder that I've experienced this year. It was late June and there had been a huge rain storm, and my sister was out in the sun room on our house. There are two kitties that kinda live in our yard and we are used to seeing them. Apparently, the one cat kept looking from my sister to this black little ball and back again, until my sister took notice and saw something, not moving from her vantage point, in the yard. She hollered to me that she thought there was a dead kitten in the yard.
I really wasn't thinking in that moment. I simply sprung into action. I immediately thought to go look and try to figure out what to do. I remember my sister questioning me and I'm not even sure what I thought I would do if there as, in fact, a dead cat. I can't even watch the animal welfare commercials without getting upset - how would I handle this?
There was definitely a kitten, covered in bugs and drenched from the storm. I'm starting to get that achy, weepy feeling when I see her move every-so-slightly. She's somehow still alive and I just jumped into action. We got some water to clear away all the bugs and picked her up with a little oven mit and dish towel and went to the shelter. I just wanted to make sure she wasn't suffering and in pain, and if so, have them deal with it because I couldn't just leave this little baby out there after a storm to die slowly with evil bugs. The shelter wouldn't take her, and I guess we could've forced the matter, but once they said she might be okay, I knew she would be coming home with us.
This picture was taken not long after that, I believe. It wasn't a smooth road, but she has always been a tough cookie, since the first moment I met her. She had issues where the bugs had laid eggs in her eyes and she might lose her vision (our vet says she might have issues later in life, but not now). She had issues where there was a chance she wouldn't recover from her cold-the-whole-ordeal, but this kitten just had such will (she still does). She is tough and a survivor and, sometimes I sit in wonder, thinking back on that moment, that such a little thing withstood so much. And I had a small hand in helping her to see six months old and to get to witness her crazy personality. She loves Josh Groban, waterboarding her toy mice (I'm not sure what that's about), and playing.
I know there is always so much of a deal made about human perseverance, but I think it applies to all creatures, and that we can learn something from anything in the universe. And this little cat, named Katniss after one of my favorite strong female characters, sort of reminded me that if she could survive something so huge, I could get through a bad day at work or deal with the issues I've been so afraid to face.