My pregnant cat, my object lesson

Lessons from a cat. Who knew? I know they're good for cuddling, they love to drink my half and half up at an unreasonable rate, and their claws hurt. We have two outdoor cats: Tom Cat (gender obvious, thanks to the 4 and 3 year olds who named him after Tom Kitten in the Beatrix Potter books); and Tiggy, a very small, tame cat who is currently carrying a LOT of kicking kittens in her belly.

What am I learning from my pregnant cat, you ask?

First, she is teaching me about seasons. In cat language, I would change Ecclesiastes 3 to "a time to bounce and a time lie around". This pregnant cat, usually almost kitten-like in her bouncy demeanor, has laid in the same spot, changing position frequently for the last week. She literally only gets up to eat, even that she does with a grunt and a large physical effort. I am not good at this, lying around in the right season. No matter the season, I have a billion and one projects lined up and crowding into both my free moments and my over-stressed brain.

Secondly, I noticed that even cats have Braxton-Hicks contractions. This poor cat has been having visible contractions for weeks now. What this teaches me is that even animals must go through significant pain and labor for the most valuable things in life. I am going through a season of depression, anxiety, loss, grief, and turmoil. I am reminded of Paul's words: For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (Romans 8:22-23)

This verse tells me two very important things: 1) it is okay to groan, moan and lament the bad things that happen in this world - indeed, it says the whole world groans together. And 2) there is a light at the end of the tunnel, when we are adopted and redeemed. Sometimes it seems like we are trading one sorrow for another. My pregnant cat will probably feel so when she has relief from her labor but then the troubles of toothed nursling kittens. I feel so now, to some extent, as my brain begins to function more normally and I take on care of my house and children bit by bit.

I can't wait to put up pictures of the newborn kittens!

Excerpts from my Gratitude Journal #674-684:
674. Making the safe decision
676. Catching up on sleep
677. A hospital piano that is IN TUNE!
679. Quiet - God wakes me at 5 a.m. to spend some time with Him
683. "If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness" (II Corinthians 11:30)
684. "So to keep me from being too elated, a thorn was given me..." (II Cor. 12:7). For me, as well - cancer, depression, heart trouble - all my medical issues taking their turns ravaging my body and soul.