That sound was music to our ears…sort of.
On March twenty-eighth one of the cats had kittens in our back yard right up against the wall of the house. Four tiny but cute lives right out in the open. The amazing thing was that she would allow me to walk right up and pet and love on her babies. Especially when it took so long to be able to pet her. I did worry over them being out in the open, unprotected. I thought she would move them but seemed in no hurry to do so.
Then, a couple of days after the kittens arrival, we had a storm system come through that produced a lot of rain. It was this steady downpour that showed no sings of easing. My son tried to create a shelter, but their position against the wall directly below the fuse box made that difficult. Mom and babies were definitely getting very wet. I happened to look out the window to see her moving her babies. I thought she was moving them around into our carport, but she didn’t.
I had no idea where she moved them. Days passed by with the silence and lack of evidence of kittens anywhere became concerning. I began to accept that she had either moved them far from the house, or worse, they had lost all nine lives.
Yesterday my son and I were standing in the kitchen talking when he suddenly suddenly raised his hand in one of those “be quiet” moves. I heard them then, loud and plain. She had moved her babies under the house, directly under the kitchen table. From the sounds, they are strong at least vocally.
It was funny though, our official cat heard the cries and came to investigate. She wandered around under the table for almost half an hour searching. Our dog Bella also heard and went under the table to search. As I write this, they are crying and the dogs are whining wanting to search for the source of the cries. Obviously they can’t get to them which makes it entertaining and at the same time annoying to watch.
It does make me think though. How many times has something or someone gone missing, and the joy that is felt when it or they are discovered? How do we feel, when what was a loss, is turned into a recovery? When we go from sadness, to joy? Yes, yesterday was about kittens, but there are of course greater things. From health, to employment, to family and the list goes on. It really doesn’t matter if what is important to you, is not so important to others. It is your life, not theirs. It is your moment, your recovery, your find, therefore your joy.
I know of someone who had a difficult time in school. They didn’t fit, didn’t want to fit, the box of accepted normalcy. They were who they were, and simply wanted to be themselves. But, because they chose individuality, they became a target. They left public school and went to get their diploma in a local college. From their them went to a trade school and graduated Dean’s Honor Roll. Moving away from those who couldn’t live and let live they found their stride and became who they wanted to be. They found what was feared lost which was their journey in the life.
I know of someone who lost their job before Covid began. Someone stepped up and told them of a position coming open. They now work their dream job and are happier than I’ve ever seen them.
I know many people other than me, who have lost a partner due to death, or a bad break-up. I have witnessed their pain as they struggled to reach a level of peace and understanding. I have watched and listened as they worked through their grief. I have watched, as they found a level of acceptance, and then levels of happiness returning. Maybe not joy, as much as contentment.
Many if not most of us knows someone who has faced loss, but in the end has found and or reclaimed a great joy. We can and will find those moments, when we actively search and watch for them. There are times yes, that they will catch us by surprise, but the important thing, is that we are ready to experience and accept that joy and excitement. Have you ever seen one of those videos where a dog that has been lost for a while, that is returned to their family? That…is the joy for which we need to be ready. The joy that is even greater than that of the dog who watches his owner return after a day away at work or even a trip to take out the garbage. That can’t be still, can’t be quiet, can’t stop smiling, can’t stop crying joy.
The good thing, the best thing, is that our journey is not one that we must take alone. Over the past few years I have faced the loss of my husband, of my brother and of my job. To say my life’s balance was upended is putting it mildly. I had to search and reclaim what life and happiness was.. I have battled anger, depression, fear, loneliness, but not alone. With each struggle, with each battle, I learned and I moved closer to God. I learned a greater faith, and a greater peace. I have been told often that I am too independent, but I’m not. I am very dependent on God and God’s strength and peace, not my own. It is there, with Him, where I am reclaiming my joy and my peace.