Sunday, March 24, 2013

Warming "Chilly"

If your life is normal, you will get curveballs.  The question is, "Can you knock 'em out of the park?"  We all want to do the right thing whether for our own personal gratification, or for appearances sake.  Six days ago, when it was cold as hell outside, I arrived home from work and saw something on my front step.  The closer my car crept to my garage, the more my eyes squinted, and the more I leaned into my steering wheel.  "Whaaat is thaaat?"  And there, with a bit of relief, was this little gray kitten curled up on my front step trying desperately to stay warm in the late afternoon sun.  It was barely 20 degrees and, unless you're a grizzly bear, it's not easy to stay warm in that temp.  

I quickly parked the car in our heated garage and realized how wrong it was to keep my car toasty warm while this little kitten was shivering just a few feet away.  I felt guilty.  I ran into the house, and without even saying Hello to my kids, grabbed an old blanket and went into the garage to search for a place to make a small, cozy spot for the tiny cat.  I knew the chilly kitty was frightened so rather than trying to capture it (for it's own good, right?) I left the garage door open enough for her to find the heat.  It only took minutes and she was safe...and warmer.  Ok, now what.  It will be hungry, thirsty...what else? 

It didn't take long to search on line and get immediate answers on how to house our new garage resident.  I shredded some newspaper for makeshift litter box, called Kathy down the street for some cat food, and got a plastic container for fresh water.  I walked into the garage, slowly, and started talking to our fuzzy guest assuring her that she was going to be ok.  I set out a plate with rice and chicken in an area I knew she was hiding.  I backed away and waited...soon a witness to what near starvation looked like as she ate the food as if it was going to disappear on her.  I thought to myself that this little kitten wasn't going to starve on my clock.  I went back into my comfortable home and wondered if she was still chilly out there on the concrete floor.  My next thought was, "Did I just ignore my family for the sake of a cat?"  I had to turn my attention to where it should be...all the while thinking about Chilly.  Yes, that's her name I decided.

During the next 4 days we did our best to make Chilly feel safe and warm.  My car's new home was the driveway.  And, we were all to talk and walk softly when going into the garage.  Mom's rule.  I wondered what to do with Chilly.  I wanted her...but didn't.  No, I realized I wanted her to be ok. 

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