The Year of the Cat :)
To the reader: One picture is slightly adult and immodest in content. This is your warning. :)
Exactly one year ago, I received a phone call at 6:30 in the morning from a young women in Ellsworth named Jane. Her call was the culmination of six months of advice and was to change my life a little bit more than I expected... because she brought Morianna into my life.
When I lived in Vegas, I used to do a lot of volunteer work for a an animal shelter called the Ark. It was a pretty large shelter and dealt with the majority of strays that were caught in the city limits. I thoroughly enjoyed some of the new skills that I learns and I was soon one of the leaders in training stray cat to become 'smooshable' - a skill that is needed for many people to choose them for a pet. It was a fun place to volunteer, where I saw some awful and sad things, but I also gained great friends, some of the most wonderful companions that I was to know over the last decade or so, and some neat skills that I figured I wouldn't use again after moving to Maine. (I also gained some wonderful rabbits for my grandfather and a few fun hamsters as well.) A few years ago when I had some spare time and my life was beginning its horrible upheaval, the 'local' shelter in Maine started a thrift store in Blue Hill to raise money and I happily joined its volunteer staff. I tagged items, sold them, and tried to help move items quickly to get as much money as I could thinking of the animals that would benefit by my service since the shelter itself was so far away. At one point a woman waked in and told me about some stray cats that lived behind the Riverside cafe and expressed her concern about their future lives and what could be done. I gave her advice on how to catch them- the slow but almost always successful way- and agreed to pick them up and get them to the shelter after she had been successful.
That didn't change my current situation however. I now had three stray cats in various stages of ill health and not even a real roof over my head. I needed to deal with the difficulties of introducing Brock to them slowly and trying to find them homes. In the end, one year later I still have all three of them and they have been one of the biggest blessings that I have gotten in the last year. The first thing I did was set all three of them up in a large dog crate. Their great fear of me was very apparent and I started in on some of the small things that I used to do to gain trust or at least less fear. I waited for a breakthrough and the breakthroughs can be slow (and usually are.) Stray cats that are older than a few weeks have usually had a few really bad experiences, bad nutrition as well as difficulties in their gestation and early weeks. All of these difficulties can cause brain damage, birth defects, disease, etc...
What blessings have you gotten in the form of trouble or difficulty? Anything as 'purry' as mine...? :D