I have commented before on my family of furry children. Four live in the house, one in the garage.( I just couldn’t take the rabbit mess and smell in the house.) Once I got all narcissistic manipulative controllers out of my life, once I had all the power to say yes to whatever I wanted (ok ok, kids wanted) my fur family expanded quickly.
I realize now I said “yes” for two main reasons. I finally didn’t have someone standing over my shoulder telling me I couldn’t have pets, and because the house got too quiet when Grant and Kristy weren’t here. If I talk out loud to myself, I always see ears perked up, so now I feel a little less crazy as well, so that’s just a bonus.
Our house is far from boring now. Someone furry is always creating some sort of entertainment. I can’t be anywhere in the house without them within 4 feet of me. I am not allowed to go to the bathroom without at least one in attendance. I have approximately two feet to myself in my king size bed at night. This can get a little daunting at times, but I make the best of it. Kristy and I have even made our own rendition of “Grandma’s Feather Bed.”
Yep, it’s a little crazy, but I don’t care. I love them all. Even the mentally challenged one, because I know she would be dead if she was not with us. I love her because she is not easy to love, but she deserves it with the abuse she has lived through.
Some of my greatest life lessons have not come from humans. Oh trust me, I have learned plenty of heart breaking lessons from people, but some of my most valued lessons come from my children with fur.
1. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you need:
I am awakened every morning by 100 pounds of obnoxious Lab who, I swear, thinks he is being funny rolling on me to get me out of bed to feed him. My monster cat will literally follow me room to room yelling at me if the cat food bowl is empty.
I, on the other hand, am not very good at asking for or accepting help. I am a very independent person and HATE how much I need to lean on my family and Dane just to make ends meet. I am better at asking for what I need emotionally. I tell Dane when I am feeling insecure, and he often chuckles and then tells me how much he loves me. I don’t fall all over begging for attention because I am not like that and can’t stand “needy” people, but every once in a while it is just nice to hear how much I am loved…especially when there are 450 long miles between us and it feels like it will be FOREVER until I see him again.
2. Love with everything you’ve got:
My furry children are always stepping all over each other to greet me when I get home from ANYWHERE. Even if I just ran out to get gas. They surround me until I sit down and then 3 of the 4 are usually sitting close enough, if not on me, to touch me.
Isn’t that what we all want, to feel wanted? Every time I hear the song “Crash my Party” by Luke Bryan I think of my boyfriend. He is the guy in the song. I never knew what it was like to be loved by someone who knows how to love until about 2 years ago. It can be very scary to trust again after being hurt. But you know what? You loved and got hurt but still lived. Trust “good” love and give it in full force in return. Real, good, love is so worth the chance, and needs to be valued.
3. Don’t be so afraid:
I have a cat who thinks she is a dog. She plays fetch…for real. She dives off my tall entertainment center and launches head first into the shower curtain like a kamikaze pilot. She sneaks into the garage and rubs noses with the rabbit through the cage. She slaps the Lab across the face like she owns him. She lives and rules her little fur filled world.
I crash and burn much more often than I fly high. When I do get to soar, it makes the crashing worth it. I had to live in what felt like a tight little cage for too many years with a husband who was afraid of everything. I can’t live like that. He felt great comfort in his tight little constrained world and forced me to live in it too. How do you want to look back at your life while dying? I want to look back….and laugh.
4. Wag your butt:
Show your appreciation. Say I LOVE YOU. Tell your loved ones how much you appreciate them. Showing appreciation doesn’t have to cost anything. Be thoughtful and thank others for their thoughtfulness. Give compliments freely and try to lift someone’s day. It’s amazing how it lifts yours right back. I feel appreciated every time I walk in the door, or have a sleepy little furry head on my lap. I feel appreciated when the Lab is killing himself, as he is at this very second, to push his head between my hands and the keyboard, then lovingly looks up at me and touches his nose on my chin.
5. Love unconditionally… but expect the same in return:
My pets love me no matter what. They love me when I gain a few pounds, get moody, cry and even when I first get up in the morning with my hair sticking up everywhere. They love me when I fail, and dance around the kitchen with me when I celebrate.
Choose a partner who sees YOU and loves YOU and treats you well no matter what. A partner who tries to change you does not truly love YOU.
Choose someone who sees you as an equal. A partner who is always putting down everyone else will eventually start putting you down as well. Someday you will be below their standards, too. Someone who puts their needs before your own will never treat you as an equal and is not worth the love you have to give.