Learn to enjoy the moment

As I watched the thing jettison across my kitchen floor and catapult into the spare room, it reminded me of the “Tasmanian Devil” of the “Looney Tunes” cartoon series I used to watch on television when I was 12 years old.
Then the fur ball ricocheted back into the kitchen, leapt onto a kitchen chair, and launched itself through the swing lid of the garbage can.
Hind legs and a tail stuck out of the can as the thing clung to the bag inside, having caught itself mid-hurl when it realized the yucky fate at the bottom of the can.
My outburst of laughter was meant to balance sheer hilarity with the sudden realization of “What was I thinking?” when I decided to get a kitten just because I wanted to give an old cat something new to play with.
The new kitten had been in the house but two hours and already I was kicking myself for listening to my heart instead of my head.
But what else is new. I forever am listening to my heart while putting out “missing person” ads for my head; hopelessly lost in the greatest battle ever known to womankind and animal lovers.
And then there was “Millie,” a 14-year-old matriarch feline well beyond change. When that little kitten entered the house for the first time, Millie’s jaws opened to reveal a second row of teeth I have never seen.
Her eyes turned black and she spewed out a guttural bemoaning with bodily contortions the likes of which I never want to witness again.
I nearly called an exorcist.
But my optimistic “cat co-habitation side” persuaded me to wait it out, and in fact things have improved in the days since “Lucy” entered the picture.
Millie no longer contorts, but has mastered the “flat stare of impending death” and a motionless hierarchal statuesque embodiment of a cat ancestor from ancient Egypt.
Nonetheless, Lucy has brought a refreshing young, spirited flow to my neck of the woods. Curiously, this small ball of fur teaches the lessons of moment to moment living as it scampers after the catnip mouse and then plunks itself prone on the floor for a nap—only to awaken 15 minutes later for a pounce and a leap up the new curtains in the living room.
And if the lessons about enjoying the moment aren’t apparent enough for me through the “here and now” of a kitten, I can dwell on the quotable indelible words of my grandson, who had impressed me enough when he said all he wanted for Christmas was to spend time with his family.
Then from the back seat of my car last week, he said (without an iota of persuasion) after listening to his favourite song, “Hey Brother” by Avicii, on my car stereo: “That song fills my mind and empties it of all the things I did in school today.”
Ben is six years old.

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