Muff and I have had a problem to work out for about a year now. Jealousy!
For a long time she would come in when I was working on the computer. She would jump up to be petted, investigate everything and then curl up and go to sleep in a very companionable way. Then, very suddenly, the computer became an enemy. Every time I turned it on she would do all in her power to get me away from it. She would scratch on her scratching post so I would have to stop and praise her and give her a treat—over and over again. Then she would sit in the hallway and yell—she can really yell! Or she would come in and play with the wires behind the desk. Computing had become a very frustrating activity—no longer fun!
About a month ago I started analyzing the situation to see what had changed. All of my detecting skills led me to try something. Glenn had fixed my machine so that a cat meowed each time I turned it on—so I asked him to take it off. The change in Muffy was amazing! The very first time I turned it on she came up purring to be petted, investigate and sleep—just like she used to. The enemy was gone. I don’t know what that cat was saying—but she did not like it!
Her “buttons” are no longer being pushed—and there is much less tension in our house. The same technique works with people. There are things we do that push buttons in the people we live with. And they get pushed every time. If we can look back and analyze the actions, it can be a very simple matter to stop the cycle.
I liked my little kitty meowing on my machine—but some things just aren’t worth the fight. Caring that produces peace is something that is worth working for—and the sacrifices are usually very small.
©Micki Parkinson, an editorial from the SPEP church newsletter