Posted on July 19, 2017
We had a cat named Tiger when I was a child.
She was an outdoor cat and very self-sufficient, but also quite friendly toward her human family for the most part. I thought she was beautiful and liked her very much. One day she was hit by a car and disappeared.
We didn’t know if she was still alive but were somewhat encouraged by her disappearance, considering that if her injuries were more severe then she most likely would have been found dead on or near the road. We searched and searched for her for a couple of days until she was finally found by flashlight way back in the crawl space under the back porch. This was not a place accessible by anyone but perhaps a small child and she definitely was not agreeable to coming out. She hissed and growled every time someone shined the light on her or made any move toward approaching her. I wanted to go in and try to pull her out of there. My parents would not allow that. We did bring small containers of food and water out every day and push them back toward her with a garden rake. Eventually she had nursed herself back to health and came out from under the porch on her own. Whatever injuries she had, she kept them to herself and she dealt with them by herself. Until recently, I hadn’t thought about that in many years; now, I can completely relate to it.
I had great goals for this blog. This was to be a positive project for me. I started it at the beginning of the year, about fifteen months after my husband died, as a New Year’s Resolution of sorts. It was to be my space to simply be me: to explore my thoughts and express my opinions, without reservation or censorship. I had so much to say…. and I have yet to actually find my voice, a year and a half later. Like Tiger the cat, I have backed myself into a dark corner under the porch (well, truth be told, I’ve been hibernating inside my comfortable home, although that kind of blows my whole analogy), nursing my wounds, and quietly trying to put my broken pieces together again. In two months it will be three years since my husband died and in many ways I am more lost and isolated now than I was a year, or even two years, ago. I do understand widows and widowers much better now. I can see why some people rush into new relationships to help fill the silence and the emptiness. I also understand why other people just isolate themselves from the world and appear very squirrely to others looking in. It’s hard. And it’s a better writer than me who can describe just how hard it is, because I can’t find the words.
I still think that this a worthwhile project though, and I’m not ready yet to give it up. Here’s to renewed New Year’s Resolutions and starting over in July…. every day is a new beginning, and cliches are cliches for a reason!