I was standing on the porch this morning at 4am watching our cat, Babe, eat her breakfast on one side and her daily morning visitor eat at the other, when it occurred to me how much our morning routine has changed over the past year. Babe, once an “inside-outside” cat has become strictly an outside citizen due to some intolerably strange habits she developed. Our once shy morning visitor has gone from curious and cautious to confident and comfortable. I used to worry about Babe getting her fair share of breakfast. Now I just put out two portions. This morning she was eating at her plate and the raccoon peeked over the edge of the porch and put one paw on the old mailbox that sits there. I said, “You know where yours is; get over to the other end!” and gestured with my arm. He backed off, waddled across the yard, and over to the other end of the porch. Lol I decided I had to get a picture, so I went back inside for the camera. When he heard the door again he hid behind the lawn mower. I just went back to Babe’s plate and waited. Sure enough he was out in a flash to finish eating. When I went inside I remarked to Gary that the first time we saw the raccoons I had to wait by the front window every night for a week in order to get one grainy, blurry photo. Now I can stand on the porch and ask one of them to pose! (The others are still afraid of me.)
Today is different in other ways. For years I was sad on this day, but today I am just thankful. Yes, today is the day my mother was born. The calendar marks so many days that we never forget: birthdays of the living and the dead, anniversaries celebrated and those best forgotten, days of joy and of sorrow. The date is a reminder of all that we gained and lost with the existence of just one person. Mother would have loved the raccoons and laughed with me at their antics. I miss her, but I am so very grateful for the time we had together.