Lessons from my Cats - or - Boundaries and Subtleties
April 14, 2021
Boundaries have come up for me front and center within the last month. I have been recognizing in the last year how boundaries, more specifically, non-boundaries have shaped some of my life significantly. And I am grateful that it is coming into clear vision within my life.
Of all the ways to bring it up, it was my furry companions who filled in the outline to get a more complete insight.
Shortly before the year's end in 2020 I agreed to foster a cat from a friend who had passed away. I had been thinking about opening up my home to another cat for a while. I already have two and living with them has taught me that cats are very structured beings. They like things just as they are. When they claim a chair and you sit in it, they get irritated. Every time I have moved, I watch them and which spaces they claim so I can arrange my home decorations and outlay around that. Much easier to do then having them moving things around, knocking them off a shelf or dresser drawer to break when it falls. So I knew, bringing in a new personality was going to take some time and adjustment for all of us.
The cat I decided to bring in was a scroungy little male; skin and bones, very much traumatized. He had not just lost his human, but also his other cat family. The first week he was crying and crying and crying. I so felt for him.
The other thing about him was that he had zero manners. At times it seemed like he did not even know how to be a cat. He took easily to me. He was trying to make friends with my cats, both also male, but his single mindedness to claim all the food, and his insistence on taking over every space they were resting at did not go over well with the other two. No aggression came from them, but lots of hissing and cold shoulders.
And here is where the magic for me happened.
One night, I was talking to one of my cats who had just completely ignored the little one and left him looking sad. I asked him to please instead be the teacher. Immediately, he turned around, looked me straight in eyes and a thought formed in my mind. "What do you think I am doing?" He sounded annoyed, how could I not see it?
I opened my eyes. I looked at all the behaviors of my two older cats from the standpoint of teachings. And I realized, that was exactly what they were doing. Holding boundaries to show the newcomer how to be part of the household. Teaching the little one to be part of the pack, but not giving in to his whims and insistence to be spoiled and self-indulgent. Kindly, but sternly. They were holding their own ground.
An analogy not lost on me.
I think I am not alone when I talk about boundaries. We have been taught to give up our boundaries in so many subtle ways for thousands of generations. It is reflected in the genetics as trauma settles in and whitewashes the clear view of sovereignty.
And here we are, in this new Age. The Age of Aquarius. The Age of Love....
Where we remember to be empowered, to not give our power away when pressured. Where we learn through our own internal experience how to see, express and recognize what true love is.
There are many ingredients to love, and boundaries are definitely one of the more important ones.
- How we can love ourselves within the collective.
- How we become an integral part of building the future in love and light.
Boundaries create a space within ourselves where we feel safe and free to express our deepest truth. They help us to not be afraid of conflict but to bring up the dissonance as we feel it in the subtle ways it so often starts.
In the past would I just not express these feelings as I judged them to be no big deal. I had been taught to not make a fuss, to not rock the boat. To not make waves.
Yet the feelings are there. And with time, as they are not being addressed, they becomes that mountain of resentment. The Tsunami.
After I got clear on the lessons that the cats are teaching the little one, I got myself a deeper lesson.
A few days ago, a boundary came up that was not something that I would have ever mentioned in the past. It seemed so insignificant in the bigger picture.
Yet, after thinking about what the cats taught me, what has been stirring within me for some time, I did speak up.
And my friend and I had a conversation about it. And it started with my friend right away recognizing what had happened. After the conversation we both were in awe of all the layers of lessons learned. For both of us. In addressing the little inconsistency, we both took a huge step forward on the path into the depths of Love.
In the case of my cats, it is amazing what has happened in the short time the little one has been here. He is much happier and is starting to be confident within his own abilities. He is respecting (for the most part) our boundaries. His food insecurities are going away. There is still so much to learn for him, but he is on his way. Purring away in my lap as I write this, he is a fine addition to our little family.
Just as I know I have to learn more lessons about boundaries. I am facing them today with new confidence. To take my place in the creation of Nova Gaia Love within the greater family of all of earth's inhabitants.