Karen M. Winkelman

The LifeCrafting Guide

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by Karen M. Winkelman Monday, August 26, 2013

If you have been following along with the Saga of Seuss that has been unfolding since last fall, you know that Seuss is a male tuxedo cat, the current feline elder in our household (he’ll be 15 the end of September!), who was diagnosed with a thyroid tumor about 2 years ago. He’s part Siamese so he has that surreal cry and talks… a lot. And he’s a Scorpio to boot!

‘The Seuss Report’

Here’s a quick recap for those of you who haven’t followed this story on my FaceBook page: Seuss dropped about half his body weight and was refusing to eat. We thought his days were numbered. We found a different vet who specializes in cats (Scaredy Cats Hospital in Scottsdale, AZ)

They started a treatment that brought him back from the brink. All the prayers and support from my Facebook community and some Reiki helped too. They also believed us about Seuss’s allergies and treated him for this as well. 

By the spring he was doing good, his fur had that beautiful sheen and he was playing again. He came out of his “den” (he was semi -living in the guest bathroom for months) and was interested in food again.

Then we noticed his ears at half-mast and his sudden withdrawal, crying and disinterest in food again. Major ear infection in both ears (and both inner and outer ears), swollen ear drums, one torn. New course of treatment. He is finally doing well after a couple of months of treatment, but his hearing hasn’t returned.

We have pills and ear drops to give Seuss every other day, and daily thyroid meds. Problem is Seuss goes insane if you try to pill him. Such drama (well he is our drama king!).

Fun and games taken to a new level of madness

Last vet visit they decided that Seuss might be allergic to something he's eating. So the vet sent us home with zip-lock baggies of 3 different kibbles (rabbit, duck & venison), and a couple of cans of "hypoallergenic food." Presto! A new form of cat-induced mayhem at the Winkelman house was born! 

Every time I opened the zip lock bag to give Seuss some dry food I got barraged by the other 5 cats demanding treats and being quite vocal that I'm not giving them any.

So apparently to the cats, zip lock baggies sound like the treat package. Oh joy. They look like a flock of pigeons descending on a few breadcrumbs!

OK, so it is maybe 2 weeks since the vet put Seuss on the special hypoallergenic diet, and the results are in!

The other cats in the family are enjoying these new “special” gourmet foods. Seuss, not so much. The first week he did well eating the rabbit kibble and the duck can food.

One day he realized that this was it. No more buffets of 4 different items to choose from to entice him to eat and keep his weight stable. Only I wet/1 dry option now.

… And he refused to eat. Period. And he vocally let us know how friggin displeased he was with us and his food options.

Annoying and frustrating as it might be, at least he didn’t pee in the food like another cat of mine did (ages ago) when he didn’t like the food and obviously thought it beneath him!

Cats, like people want what they want…

So after coaxing and pleading for days, and feeling stressed out by his stubbornness and carrying on, I came to the realization that cats, like people want what they want. Whether or not what they want is good or healthy for them.

I can’t “fix” it, nor should I try. I want to “rescue” and “heal” him.

However, he (like me and everyone else) is his own being and is entitled to make his own choices. Whether or not I agree with his choices. I have no right to force my will on him.

Although these foods might help his allergies clear up, his ears to recover and him to feel better, he doesn’t like them enough to give up eating other foods he likes. (Sound familiar anyone?)

He doesn’t want his options limited, his choices taken away from him.

And he is choosing to stay where he is with his health issue for whatever reason he has and for whatever benefit he believes he is getting from it. (Attention is one of them for sure!)

Surrendering and Accepting “What Is” (instead of stressing over it because I want something different to be happening)

So I have had to find a way to be OK with that. To allow him to BE who he is. To let go of trying to control the situation (and him).

Easy?      Nope.

Necessary?      Yes... for both of us. 

We each have our own journey and no one really knows what another’s journey is all about. I have no right to try to impose my will, even if I think my intentions are good.

I wouldn’t want someone pushing me to do something I wasn’t ready to do and I’d resist (and possibly resent) the heck out of them and the change that might really be good for me.

So the more I pushed my idea of “health and wellness” on Seuss, the more he resisted.

I surrender.

I have come to a peaceful place of allowing him to eat what he wants and just send him love. The other cats can enjoy their “hypoallergenic gourmet meals” while they last.

In surrender, acceptance, love and gratitude…

PS. Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments below

Posted by Karen M. Winkelman on Monday, August 26, 2013 3:34 PM
Categories: Healing
Tags: (No Tags)
On Sunday, October 6, 2013 at 7:01 PM
Kendra said...
"I don't know why, Karen, but this brought tears to my eyes! Maybe because I love my cats dearly, and would want/do the same. Maybe because I am having a hard time letting the processes of my own life flow freely. Resistance is futile! :-)"
On Wednesday, December 11, 2013 at 11:28 PM
Karen Winkelman said...
"Hi Kendra! Thanks so much for your thoughts on this article. Yes, we often resist, and while it is futile, we can drag it out for a very long time! Be gentle with yourself... and start allowing yourself to receive. You are amazing. I wish you could see the you... "

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What My Cat, Seuss, Taught Me about Free Will and Trying to “Fix It”
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