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Wednesday with Mija

It’s time for my annual treatise on the value of napping.

It seems this is a topic that must be discussed every so often.

In marketing I think they call it top of mind awareness. Cats don’t really need this reminder.

I’m talking to you – my human friends and family.

You may think I haven’t noticed you running around from one task to the next, to-do lists dangling from your hand.

Or that I don’t see the tired look on your face, or pick up on the stress that sometimes radiates off your body.

But I do.

I notice and to be frank, I worry.

You are a human being, not a human doing.

And if you’re doing, doing, doing all the time, you’re missing out on some of the most wonderful luxuries life has to offer.

Luxuries like stretching out in the sun with a good book, and then when you’ve read your fill, drifting off to sleep.

Dozing in the sun can work miracles for a bad attitude.

You must trust me on this: Life is too short not to take naps.

And read good books.

And spend time with the people you love.

About those to-do lists:

Only use them if they really do help you remember things or get organized.

If they make you feel bad, crumple them up and give them a toss.

Because this is the true nugget of gold we cats want to share with you – life is too short to feel bad.

Are we clear on this?

Good!

Now get out there and take a nap.

 

P.S. Have you noticed in the photograph that I am totally ignoring the microfiber cleaning cloths? When this photo was snapped, I was all about napping in the sun with a good book close by. Nuff said.

I have to come clean with you on something. I am not going to see this movie.

I make this choice out of self-care – something I’m getting better at as I age.

I know it’s a Spielberg film nominated for many awards.

I know the trailer shows a gorgeous setting, a stunning horse, a beautiful relationship between this young man and his horse, and the promise of a happy ending.

But I also know it’s about war.

All the drama and angst that accompanied this very horrific war.

And I don’t want those images taking up residence in my brain.

For a long time.

Maybe forever.

I don’t want my limbic system to be hijacked,  and I am 99% certain that it will be if I sit through this movie.

In spite of myself, I will focus on the gory details, even if there aren’t many, because they will be so shocking.

So compelling.

So awful.

I don’t know about you, but my already exhausted, overly busy brain doesn’t need to be hijacked.

There is more than enough pain and fear and sadness in the world as it is. I definitely don’t need to introduce more.

I know not everyone will share my thinking on this.

But for me this is the 100% right decision.

 

P.S. If you’ve seen the film, let me know if you think I’m wrong on this call.

I’ve only had the pleasure of sharing my life with Bud and Pepper for twenty years, but I’ve been in love with horses for much longer. Over the course of my life, I’ve been to a variety of stables and horse operations to get my “horse fix.”

Sometimes those dear sweet working class horses, the ones who stand saddled all day, every day, ready to take the next batch of customers on the trail, get fed up with their job.

They tire of having riders with little to no horse experience kicking them in the ribs and yelling giddy up, when they have absolutely no idea what to do if the horse actually took off in a full gallop.

And what do these horses do to retaliate?

They head to the barn at every turn.

I’ve been on barn sour horses. They indeed have a bag full of tricks to get themselves, and you, back to the comfort of the barn.

It’s a little test of who is really in control.

Many times, it was painfully clear that of the two of us, I was not the one in control.

So lately I’ve been thinking about the term “barn sour,” and have decided that it’s happening to me.

I find that I want to spend more and more time in my home. I don’t think I’ve become a recluse, but more accurately a person tired of the stress of going and doing.

I rationalize that I’m being more discerning.

And maybe that’s true.

I am learning to listen to my heart and say “no” more often, when I really don’t want to do something.

Is that being barn sour or healthy?

Honestly, I’m still not sure.

Putting myself first isn’t easy for me. There’s that responsibility/guilt thing. The feeling that I’m letting someone down.

Yet the truth is, when I say yes to something I don’t really want to do, I let myself down.

Yikes!

I thought I would have figured this out by this time in my life. But no, I’m still working on it.

How about you?

Is this something you struggle with?

In this fast-paced life, could we all do with being a bit more barn sour?

P.S. I hate to link this to an issue of aging, but…

Is it?

We’ve had hot weather lately – mid to high nineties. One day we were so close to a hundred degrees we may as well have been there. What’s a degree or two when we’re sliding into triple digits?

The pasture has been hot and dry. I’m seriously re-thinking my noonday feeding time. Early evening is calling to me.

I don’t think Bud and Pepper would mind a bit. The past few days they’ve been hunkered down in the shed. No waiting at the gate for lunch.

Twice I walked to the shed and had a conversation with them.

They stared at me.

I moved closer.

“Come on you two. Don’t you want to eat?”

They looked quite resigned to staying right where they stood.

“Nope. We’re not hungry.”

I stroked Pepper’s neck, which usually gets her moving. “Come on girl. Let’s go.”

“I’m not going today,” She turned from me.

“Okay, then. I guess you know what you want.”

Amigo was the only horse even slightly interested in following me. He could have been convinced. In fact he took a couple of steps after me, and then he realized that no one else was moving.

He looked at Bud, Pepper, and Red, who responded by holding their ground.

“What the heck?

Oh, we’re not going?

No lunch?

Are you sure?”

Amigo has always been interested in snacks. Usually he’s first to arrive and last to leave the fence line.

But not today.

He acquiesced to the will of the herd. I really think that if he’d started, the rest would have followed.

It got me thinking about self- care. Do I have the common sense my horses seem to have? That’s a rhetorical question, because on many days I don’t think I could answer yes.

I push myself, staring at the computer until my eyes hurt and my head spins. I sometimes stay up too late knowing I’ll be tired the next day. I’ve been known to eat and drink too much.

I could use Pepper as a life coach. She could follow me around like some of the reality shows on television. She’d help me know when I’d had enough; when it was too hot to eat; too hot to stand in the sun; too hot to do anything but hang out in the shed and relax.

Relax? Yes, I remember that word.

How about you?

Could you use a dose of Pepper’s common sense self care? We may be on to something here.

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