doc w/ Pen

journalist + medical student + artist

Tag: cat

Inspiration via interruption

Regina likes to keep me company when I'm writing.

Regina likes to keep me company when I’m writing.

When I’m in a good mood, I write. When I’m in a bad mood, I write. When I discover something new, I write. You get the idea.

Putting amorphous thoughts into words, sentences, and paragraphs helps me interpret and understand my daily life. It helps me reach deep inside, to locate and process ideas and feelings I didn’t even know were there.

Usually, writing is a solitary task. This week though, I’ve had help from my dad’s cat Regina, as you can see. When I’m on the couch in the morning, computer in my lap, she quietly slips beside me and gingerly steps, one paw at a time, onto the keyboard. Soon her rump is on the black keys, her front paws on the track pad. Typing becomes a lost cause.

But I’m ok with this interruption. Regina stares up at me with her hazel eyes, and I don’t care about finishing my work. I scratch her head, stroke her back, and she purrs with contentment. I’m contented too, happy to have this warm, furry creature sitting with me and basking in my company. Writing can wait.

Unless I take allergy medicine, I get sneezy and snuffly around my dad’s cats. So felines are not likely in my own future. But the joy of having Regina and her brother, Ismael, sidling up next to me has gotten me thinking about what it would be like to have my own animal distraction.

I do like living by myself. I find solace in the peace and quiet. But it gets lonely, especially when I’m studying for hours on end. Maybe having another warm body around, even a little one that can’t talk, would help. Living in a little apartment, pets are tricky — and often not allowed at all. So perhaps this is something for my life beyond medical school. But it’s something to ponder.

The writing process helps me think. Apparently, this is the case even when that process is interrupted. It just goes to show that sometimes, interruptions — in the form of cats, or otherwise — are the best inspiration.

Be in the moment

This morning, my dad's cat Regina reminded me how important it is to just be.

This morning, my dad’s cat Regina reminded me how important it is to just be.

I had the most incredible experience this morning. It didn’t involve leaving the house. It didn’t cost anything. I didn’t even have to change out of my pajamas. For an entire hour, I sat on the couch petting my dad’s cat Regina.

My dad’s two cats are friendly, and love attention. But neither has ever sat still that long for me. So the encounter itself was a pleasant surprise. Even more surprising, though, was how amazing it felt just to be for that time. Just to exist in the moment.

I don’t often take the time for anything like that. It always seems like there is so much to do. If I’m not doing something, anything, then surely I’m falling behind. But maybe the sense of peace I got from this simple 60 minutes is a lesson to me. A lesson that no matter how much is going on, taking even a few minutes to ground myself, for serenity’s sake, is worth it. I think this is especially important as I approach my Step 1 study period and my clerkships. During both of these experiences, I’m bound to feel more harried than ever. Which means I’m bound to need a moment of tranquility more than ever.

If only I had a purring, furry friend like Regina who could remind me of that every day. I’ll just have to remind myself.