As I prepare for our move at the moment I have renovators, plumbers, painters, tilers and electricians in and out of my space all banging, drilling, chopping and discussing; while I “peacefully” pack my belongings: sorting, sifting, throwing out and keeping the bare essentials. It sounds busy yet I do make time to sit, think and have a cup of tea. When I do this our family cat, Pangaea (Pani for short) comes to sit on me for company.
This got me thinking: Pani has a story I can tell you about. She was once a very adventurous and agile cat, a skinny thing skimming along in the tree tops and roof tops. She liked to be high up. Our tree is five or six meters tall. On hot balmy days or icy cold ones too, if I went outside, I would hear a high pitched mew in the tree top. As my eye searched for her she’d be peering down at me intensely. Then she’d do this thing: alternately rubbing her chin, then her ears fast on the branch while her body followed her movement. How she stayed up I don’t know. She would make my heart flip-flop in fear of her falling down but she never did.
One day my daughter called out, “Mommy, come, see how Pani is sitting”. She was on a soft sofa cushion basically upside down. We laughed, but soon realized she was in pain. We took a closer look and saw that her tail seemed broken. The vet said that she would survive but her tail would have to come off. She now has a 2 cm tail, no longer climbs the trees, and mutters whenever she hears a door creek in the breeze. We suspect that it was the door that attacked her tail. She still leads a happy life, although changed.
When she lost her tail she was in pain and even after for quite a while she was to be treated very gentle otherwise she would lash out. This is how I feel. My possessions and home are my tail and I am in the process of letting go of it. I am saying goodbye to a season past. It is painful and some days I “loose” it emotionally but I know after the loss and mourning there is a new season waiting for us in Scotland. I am looking forward to it; that is what moving entails: losing our tails.