The New Year, Family, Friends, and Cats – Spiritual Growth, Reflection, Personal Growth, Cats

Today, the very last day of the year is foggy and frozen. Later on this afternoon a much-loved friend is coming over. We’ll work on our knitting projects, talk, and eat throughout the day. It’s what we do when we get together. We rarely complete a project, it’s all about the time we spend together. That’s what matters most.

Time is a funny thing. Time after time I’ve subjected myself to personality tests, and where I see I have grown (yes, you can grow your personality!) – I am more outgoing now than I was before – I spend a lot of time in my head creating alternate worlds and fantastical realities.

This is, in part, what makes me write. To tell those stories, those alternate narratives is thrilling and fills me in ways that nothing else can.

It’s 10 a.m. and the sun is barely cresting our neighbor’s trees to the south. My pork roast is in the crockpot and black-eyed peas and greens are on standby. The last day of the year is a time when we eat these things to bring good luck into our futures. I’ve been doing it so long, sometimes I forget that I’m lucky. That I’m blessed. But today is a day that engenders such reflections.

I am blessed.

If not with vast amounts of resources ~ with a wealth of family and friends.

If not with all household repairs completed ~ with a solid home that is comfortable and warm.


If not with a dent-free car ~ with a vehicle that keeps me safe when chaos happens.

I am blessed with memories, too.

During this holiday season, those who have gone before me, have been in my thoughts and present in my dreams. Their courage, strength, and grace have reminded me of just how much I need to grow. It is a humbling and a curious thing to realize how certain people act as the binding force within a group of people. Take one away and the rest may flounder. Make one mistake and you risk unraveling the already delicate threads that others have so carefully woven.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m a firm believer in moving away from toxic individuals – wherever they lurk. But – this is a big one – some people act as salve between others, making it easier to be together, warmer, friendlier. When those people are gone, well, even a family will inevitably take on a new shape.

The sun has now crested my neighbor’s house. The blanket of frost is gone where the golden rays have kissed the grass. In the border garden, bare limbs of the cherry tree glisten with melted ice. There is beauty in winter.

I strive to take in my surroundings, to be present, to let it sink in.

Recently my cat, Tig, has been acting strange – like he’s been trying to tell me something. He fell ill. We spent money – lots of money – and finally discovered a growth invading his stomach lining. He lost five pounds, had a hard time walking, and seemed as if he was on the way out. Now, on steroids, he seems to have perked up a bit. He’s eating, he’s sociable. He’s basking in the sun. It’s strange how connected I am with Tig. He’s even taking his medicine like a good boy and hardly ever complains. I suppose he knows this is helping him feel better. Or, more likely, he will put up with anything I ask him to endure. He’s a good little friend.

I’m sharing this part with you because Tig could use all the healing thoughts you have to spare. And because, well, cats! We all need them, whether we think so or not.

I’m wishing you all good things that enrich and bring joy to your lives.
Shiny bright linings when dark clouds breach the horizon.
Love and justice.
Enough work to make you yearn for a day off and enough days off to yearn for work.
And success at whatever your deepest heart desires.

Let’s chat soon.