Not Broken, Not even Beautifully

“We’ll fight, not out of spite
For someone must stand up for what’s right
‘Cause where there’s a man who has no voice
There ours shall go singing
My hands are small I know
But they’re not yours, they are my own
But they’re not yours, they are my own
I am never broken” – Jewel, Hands

This has been a particularly disturbing week for me. Guess what? It has nothing to do with adoption!

The announcement of the death of Osama Bin Laden brought out some interesting behavior in many I know and love and since much of that behavior and the associated beliefs were so contrary to my own, I felt a bit of a tremor at my foundation. I debated a bit, not heavily, but a bit. I shared my position which specifically stated I was okay with Bin Laden’s death and the way it happened but I had serious concerns about American (well some American’s response) to it. I was not out celebrating, I was not screaming USA! USA.  I was not ripping off my top and shimmying my ample bosom around. I felt no need to do any of those things and I was embarrassed to be American when I saw what some others were doing. Nietzsche came to mind “Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one” as did thoughts of the shadows sides of our personalities, the cold war, memories of that awful day of 9/11 and what happened in my home with my Swedish born au pair and my young son.  I found much, too much,  of the disturbing reaction laced with jingosim, ignorance, paranoia and xenophobia.  I felt frightened for a bit of a spell, worried how the Arab world would react and equally saddened that my children, all three of them, have to live in this world for far longer than I will.

Whilst conversing over Facebook with a friend, I was told that I was clearly “too intense and analytical and needed to relax”.  I did not take that as a compliment.  When I posted a status update about it, another friend (a mother who surrendered to the Easter House network) remarked that whomever told me I was intense should have met me a year ago. This too, I found to be less than complimentary (it was a reference to my activism and strong views on Easter House and baby brokers and adoption, which many of my EH friends took issue with).

In the end, by today, which is technically the end of my week for I am off on Friday, I feel deflated and a bit lost and questioning my own values, morals, and even my friendships.

Then Oriah posted on her Facebook. Oriah Mountain Dreamer is an author and from her own site “a story-teller, a lover of words and symbols and the stories that lift our spirits, open our hearts and offer us ways to see patterns and create meaning in our lives.” I discovered her years ago and have devoured nearly all her writings, certain ones several times over. Her post today included a video. It caught my attention earlier in the a.m. but I only just now got to watch it. I have embed it below.

It simultaneously renewed my faith a bit in fellow Americans and also validated me.  I am okay with intense or highly principled (as my darling Rich labels me).  I am good with that. I am even okay with being “the bleeding heart liberal”.  As my friend Mirah once told me in response to that statement, I would rather have a bleeding heart than none at all.

The last words in this video struck me somewhere good. Thank you Oriah.

“Remember your heart is a weapon the size of your fist. Keep fighting. Keep loving.”


Cat Doodie

Desperate times call for desperate measures and more importantly, publishing off topic posts that are all about cat feces.

I am not kidding.

I am appealing to any of my readers that may be cat people to offer their insight or perhaps their own private cat whisperer.  My fiance and I are at our whiskers end with our two feline friends.

Some history.

Layla is about 2 years old.  She was obtained as a kitten from the local humane society by my fiance when he lived alone (no other humans but two other cats).  The other two resident cats (now both gone) were older.  Layla was “his girl” (or so she thought until I cam into the home and took her place). Layla is strictly an indoor cat. The two other kitties were outdoor cats (and one is “gone” because he never came back. Sob. We feared the coyotes got him. We re-homed the other one as she was also an outdoor cat and in our new neighborhood she could not be due to great risk of injury. We tried to keep her indoors but she would literally jump out windows and smash through screens.  But I digress.)

Approximately two years go by and in that time frame fiance and I purchase a home and move.  Layla was alone in the new house and started acting up. And by acting up we mean she started leaving her kitty droppings outside the litter box (she did do this occasionally at fiances old home..not always..but sometimes). She would be in the right general area but not in the box. On and on it went. We tried everything (or so we thought) to get her to figure out the correct location to deposit her fecal matter.

We changed litter boxes.
We changed litter.
We moved the location.
We picked up the incorrectly placed poop and put it INTO the box.
We put more litter.
We put less litter.
We prayed to the feces gods (that’s not true, but it does sound good, and it is not out of the question even for this agnostic blogger.)

On and on…

No luck.

We then decide perhaps she is angry with us, maybe even lonely since Jennie Boom Boom and Budman are no longer with us.

After much discussion, we return to the humane society and pick up the dashing Mr. Michael Jackson Pollock.

After a day or two of Layla hissing and asserting her dominance, they become playful buds.Adorable even. Layla is very mothering to the younger kitty.  Cleaning him, snuggling, etc. Absolutely adorbs!

Yet, the poop issues continue and multiply because Mr. Michael Jackson Pollock sees Layla and likely thinks “heeeeeeeeey, so this is how you do it here..” (either that or he is creating a new form of Pollock artwork).

I pretty much go nuts.  I scoop the poop, spray, clean, etc. fanatically.  It appears to me that if I keep the box uber clean (as in pretty much get there to scoop the instant the matter leaves the poop shoot) they are more likely to use the box. Prissy kitties? You betcha but I can deal. I am not exactly a fan of public portapotties so I can relate to their need for a fresh box each time.

So, just when I think I have the shit all cleared up (pun intended) we have a new behavior.

Someone is now deciding to deposit their business by the front door nightly. On my lovely hard wood floors (liquid and solid waste matter).  I have not yet “caught” the offending party (though I am pondering a home video system not unlike the type used in Paranormal Activity).

The cherry on this craptastic sundae is that now we have kitties peeing in the bathroom, in front of the toilet. Isn’t that cute?  (The correct answer is no, btw.)

What could be going on here?  How does one “train” a cat to go in the right place? Are they acting up? Mad at us? (Note: there are no signs of illness).

I am frankly pissed off and tired of being shit all over.

Any suggestions?

P.S. The photo above is the lovely Layla.

Have you Blurbed?

Has anyone blurbed their blog?

Have you used a different tool or service?

I am toying with the idea of stopping, chopping off or blurbing my blog.  There are many reasons behind this (which I will get to in a different post).

Welcome any insight readers may have on blurbing.