Cat and Mouse
by Jill Becker, MD., MA.
This morning, I awoke to the dulcimer sounds of the cat wading through papers, knocking things over, and generally making a mess. Experience has taught me that he has likely brought in some kind of a “gift” and is now trying to “wrap it.”
Anyhow, I came down to the library and saw him poking around behind a basket. At that point I was certain that there was some lovely creature hiding out, just trying to survive. I took a peek but didn’t see anything. Well, I saw a dog leash and I hoped that, perhaps, Midnight was missing Chloe (who is away) and was trying (apologies to Dr. Skinner) some kind of cat-behavioral therapy. So, I went downstairs, consciously deluding myself, and made some coffee.
A minute or so later I heard the cat knock over the dog’s bowl. Now I was certain that this was a dog-missing induced psychosis; perhaps there were some dog abandonment issues seeded deep in the recesses Midnight’s psyche which originated in his earlier days at The Animal Rescue League. Perhaps this was a past-life trauma. I really didn’t know.
I brought my coffee up to the library and sat down to check my email. Well, wouldn’t you know it? The little traumatizing event revealed itself to be a mouse which was chirping away trying to scare the cat off. Midnight would have none of it. He toyed with the mouse and chased him around the kitchen.
Realizing that I could save this little creature from its own trauma, I got a mosaic mold (the first thing I could get my hands on), ran downstairs and, after putting on shoes, caught the little guy (or gal) under the mold.
Well, at first I tried to slip a large sheet of card stock under the mold so that I could keep the mold on the mouse and safely escort it outside. But, the little gal (or guy) poked its head out and I knew that wouldn’t work.
I decided that I could slowly push the mold (this thing is about 2 inches high and 14 inches in diameter – it looks much like a large cake pan but it’s black and made of very hard plastic) along the floor, to the door, and let the gal (or guy) go. The door that required travel over the tile floor was closer so I chose that one, knowing that there would be much rumbling in the blackness for the mouse. But, if I went slowly, we’d both make it.
So, that’s what I did. I pushed the mold along the tile floor, just 12 or 14 feet. But, for this little 2 inch long guy (or gal) that must have felt like this awfulness would never end. It also had to be terribly loud, terribly dark and terribly scary. At the end of the difficult journey, I opened the door, lifted the mold and had to nudge the mouse out and to apparent safety.
I started to think; maybe this is what our lives our like. Maybe we are going through our days, doing our best, and some ‘cat’ pounces on us. Maybe we have to live through our own difficult circumstances, in the deafening darkness of the mold, not knowing what is on the other side. And, maybe we simply can’t see the LL Bean Jammie clad body that is guiding us, safely, along the bumpy tile floor in order to get to the wonderful light that is beyond that door.
Or, maybe not.