577: Maturing with Age

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I hope everyone is aware that growing bigger and older does not equate with becoming a mature person. Achieving the age of majority and being considered a legal adult has absolutely nothing to do with making wise decisions, or living your life in a mature, healthy manner.

Maturity is coming to grips with yourself, all of yourself, the good, strong parts that you like and celebrate, and the shameful weaknesses that you have struggled to overcome, and that you may still struggle to overcome – but at least you have named them, and in so doing, you have robbed them of their power in your determination to rid them from your character and life. You can look back at your personal history and come to some sort of peace with it, knowing and accepting that you were not perfect, and that you are no longer that person, thank God.

Part of that maturing is understanding that even if you could go back and change things, that you would not do so. This is because you made the decisions you made thinking they were the best ones you could make. Looking back with the 20/20 vision of hindsight, I can see that decisions I once made for the greater good (not only for me, but for those I was responsible for) didn’t work out as I had hoped that they would. I could not have known that looking forward -no one could have known that. Thus, I would not change them. They helped me grow and mature into the person I have become, who is not the person who others knew years ago.

My conscience is clear. I made my apologies to those I  wounded along the journey (both deliberately and unintentionally). What they do with my sincere regret is not in my hands. They will have their own maturing to do, as they come to terms with their own flaws. All humans have them.

I am responsible for me. I always have been, even when I blamed others in my youth, arrogance, and ignorance.

Maturity is a hard-won badge of honor. Not everyone gets there.

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572: Family

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Family can be your greatest treasure and resource, the source of unending strength and encouragement.

Family can be your greatest disappointment, the source of incredible angst and unmitigated pain.

Some family members are the most stalwart, loyal, got-your-back, genuine humans on Earth

and some can’t be trusted as far as you could throw Mount Everest on a clear day.

Some show you a genuine and honest face of acceptance and unending love

others show a mask of genuineness and honesty that is as pretty and as false as a cubic zirconia – and is worth even less.

As you grow older and wiser, you learn to appreciate and honor those who return your love, and to avoid those who don’t.

Even if you gave birth to them.

125: Cat Logic

I have learned a lot watching and living with cats. They have a unique perspective on the world that makes sense to them, and often, to us two-legged animals, too.

*Sharpen your claws daily – you never know when you’ll need ’em.

*When mama yells, either 1. fold your paws and look innocent, OR 2. Run hide and be real quiet.

*If somebody scares you, the best thing is to fluff up and growl – that should do it.

*A patch of sunshine is a perfect reason for naptime.

*ANYthing can be a new toy.

*Cover up your own messes, so nobody else has to deal with the stink (I really like this one).

*When you are bored, chase your OWN tail.

*If you cannot see them, they cannot see YOU.

*There is a time and place for lovemaking – and it is when and where SHE says.

*If all else fails, take a nap.

*More than one bath a day is perfectly normal.

*It is your God-given right to get at least one loving session from your people every day – more is better.

*If somebody is in the kitchen, your chances of getting a treat increase exponentially.

*Ask politely when you want something. If you don’t get it, ask again. And again. And again. And again. And……..you get the picture.

*If a housemate annoys you, swat them.

* A flat rug on the floor is a personal challenge.

*Fly hunting is a perfectly legitimate occupation. And they taste good, too.

*If you lick a housemate, they will usually lick you back.

*Don’t use your claws unless you have to. The “stiff arm” is usually enough for them to get the message.

*Kittens need to learn respect for their elders. Teach ’em if they don’t know.

*Just because she’s a girl, does not mean she won’t kick your tail.

*When Mama feels bad, curl up in her lap and purr to help her feel better (Thanks, Caruso!).

*If somebody wants¬†to give you pets and cuddles, you let ’em.

*Food is not important enough to fight about – mama’s loving IS.

*Before you go outside, be sure your collar is on, in case you get lost.

*Always investigate strange smells and noises.

*If you are lonely and can’t find your friends, meow loudly until someone finds YOU.