Lured into Rescue
During my niece’s move to the area this summer, her cat found a way out of the new house and went missing for a few days. Like many people would, I worried both about the cat – and my niece. I had never met Macleod, the cat, and so I had not been lured by its charm. However, I felt that I should do my share of looking and contribute to the rescue effort.
As I said, I had never met the cat, and so I did not know what it looked like. “Black with some white on it” was the description with which this detective had to work. So, off I went in search of Macleod. I found a lovely little cat who matched the description as I understood it; black with some white on it. It seemed rather frightened and timid, and looked to me like it may not have eaten for a day or two. The cat I found was friendly enough – it stood quietly looking at me, its tail swaying ever so slightly. I made all of the appropriate ‘cat come here’ noises and actions – and sure enough the frightened little creature made his way toward me. I patted it and it seemed to like that, so I picked it up – ever so gingerly. We seemed to bond. This was going to be a nice friendship – or so I thought.
We began walking back to my niece’s new home when suddenly the cat became agitated. Of course, I couldn’t let the poor, frightened, timid little cat get away. If this was my niece’s cat – it needed to get home! Well, it began to push against me, and unleashed a fierce growl. Its strong arms gave tremendous leverage to its very sharp claws as it tore gashes into my arms and hands. With the precision of a seamstress it tore a slice through my shirt. It was a battle to behold!
With blood gushing from me (I had obviously lost the physical battle with the cat), I heroically held the wriggling cat up to my niece’s mother who said, “Nope. That’s not Macleod.”
I am telling this story to illustrate that sometimes we all attempt to rescue something that isn’t the right thing to rescue. Our efforts are driven by incomplete information, incorrect information, and the questions we don’t ask. Quite often emotion lures us into a rescue effort which, in retrospect, doesn’t make sense. For many, the desire to delay change and progress invites us into a tangled web of rhetoric, misunderstandings and assumptions that aren’t necessarily based in fact. Hanging on to the wrong thing can cause harm. I also understand that letting go of the right thing can be detrimental too. Deciding which is which is critical.
Macleod returned home on her own accord a day or so later; true to her personality she called the shots. I wasn’t prepared to enjoy her – but on first meeting she made her way directly to me and settled in my lap. Macleod, as it turns out is dark chocolate brown, with a teeny tiny patch of white on her neck. The right cat felt right!