“I distinctly remember forgetting that.”

Fred has taken over Ben’s suitcase/bed

I went upstairs on Saturday afternoon and found Fred peacefully sleeping in what had been Ben’s bed. I’d noticed Ben downstairs on the couch, but that they had exchanged places (or more likely, Fred just took over Ben’s spot and Ben adjusted accordingly) didn’t occur to me until I was taking their pictures. I love the way that animals adjust to each other….and how we adjust to them.

On Friday morning, I decided to take a drive and as I opened my car door, the smell of cat urine hit me. I’d been leaving my car windows open and usually Esther (who doesn’t want to come inside at night) will end up in there. Well, Ben has been getting in there too, and I guess Esther thought she’d better claim the car as her own.

I was on my way to visit my friend Nancy at the Coop, told her about my car, and she handed me a bottle of Bac-Out that completely removed the smell. I’ll leave the car windows up from now on, but I’m not holding it against either of the cats. I took care of the problem and let it go.

But I wonder;  if a human had sprayed some very unpleasant smelling thing in my car, would I be so quick to forget it? Probably not….but I’d like to think that this is where I am heading spiritually: taking each next step into new life, and with each new step, letting go of any past hurts, problems, regrets, worry or anger. Moving with ease, like a dance, with all of the other beings (human and otherwise) that I am privileged to share this life-experience with.

Clara Barton (founder and president of the American Red Cross) who never bore any grudges, was once reminded by a friend of a wrong done to her some years earlier. “Don’t you remember?” asked her friend. “No,” replied Barton firmly, “I distinctly remember forgetting that.” Taken from September’s Sun Magazine and sent to me by Susan A.

Ben happily moved to the sofa for his nap

Carolyn was the winner of the Blue Moon give-away!


12 thoughts on ““I distinctly remember forgetting that.””

  1. ROFL! I LOVE that quote! Yes…a dance, I like that. I do this with the wasps that love to build in the spaces between screens and outer doors. I open the screens slowly, tell the wasps I just need to squeak by underneath, and slip through hoping they hear me and understand I mean no harm.

  2. Hmmm, I’d do well to take a leaf from Clara Barton’s notebook, Mary. Yesterday, a friend who is a retired lawyer again passed on unsolicted advice on how I was to care for my new puppy (I’ve had dogs all my life and raised many puppies). She allowed as how she would never take on another puppy because of the mess and the chewing but preferred instead to rescue older dogs, which in itself is admirable but I wondered why, as the free advice has been passed on before, that I should not have had this message of Clara’s yesterday instead of today and why I get a flea up my nose when she does this….!
    Sandy P in Canada

  3. Ah yes…..animals as teachers. How easily we learn from their forgiving and wise ways. Thank you for this gentle and poignant post today, Mary! I hope someday to grow up to be just like my dog Bella who is perpetually joyful with whatever is placed in her life!.

  4. I don’t know if I will ever be able to reach this lofty ability of forgetting a wrong done me by a human. I really try to let most of these things go, but some cause me to stew for days. Perhaps it’s because I know that, basically, animals do not do things out of a sense of nasty intent, but humans certainly are capable of just plain meanness.

    But I’m trying…I’m trying….

  5. Nice pic: trust a cat to find the sunny spot.
    We blame humans for their actions, and then we find it hard to forgive. We tend to forget that the person we hurt most by a grudge is ourselves. I think the secret is to tell ourselves: everyone is always doing their best, however poor that best may be…
    Great quote, I’ll try to remember it!

  6. I really like that thought Delft – everyone is always doing their best, however poor that may be. A touch of humor there, and that never hurts. Grudges and perceptions (or misperceptions) of having been wronged – why do we carry them around like a bag of heavy stones. Lay them down, walk away – oh life could be so much lighter. Like water off a duck’s back. Not easy, but I’m with Suzanne Tate, “I’m trying, I’m trying!”

  7. Mary, I love the way you weave the story of your experience with the gold tread of your “reflections”….and include so many little twinkling jeweled messages: how we choose our perceptions of what is–acceptance (it is what it is)–letting go–dancing through out human interactions–forgiving–receptivity–learning from our non-human friends. And then–sharing them with us. Thank you–and thanks to all my sister responders who add so much.

  8. Hi Mary, I would like to head in the same direction spiritually. I have a thing with grudges…I hold them! What a great quote from Clara Barton. Thanks Susan A.
    The ease of animals living their lives is always a joy to behold. The pictures are so sweet! Thanks for your blog Mary. 🙂 Cindy Chambers

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