Yesterday’s puzzler of a post has followed up on itself.
Reality, that pesky giant gnat, insists that it can’t be bottled up on a blog.
Stories are life and food and hope, and we need them as much as air and ice cream. But stories end, when we all know that true stories don’t end.
The story of Shifty soothing Puzzle, nurturing our little nebbish’s needs, was neat and nice and heartwarming enough. Yes; we all need to take care of each other in this neighborhood. Yes; we can find solace in each other if we look. Yes; there was peace for Puzzle.
But oh, yes, that’s right…needs resurface.
Needless to say, Puzzle’s gasping chasm of need was not filled to the permanent brim on Wednesday morning. Mere hours later, he was howling again, working nerves and longing loudly for love that, frankly, is never ever ever enough.
We are never “cured” of our aches and empties, never finally, decisively convinced that we’re loved and safe. I wish it were otherwise. But until the day when we get it good, for good, we’re going to keep needing each other, irritating each other, learning — if we’re lucky — to care for each other against all anxieties and annoyances.
I’m grateful to report that, yes, Shifty let Puzzle smoosh into him another 500 times.
Tux let Puzzle plant himself directly in Tux’s personal space in the very narrow (read: one person) window box.
We all pet Puzzle 300-500 times each hour.
The wailing stopped, until it started again.
This is a long-haul business, this love thing. Heroics and high-fives have their place, but the business of “neighboring” each other takes stamina and spirit and sturdier stuff than anyone can muster alone.
And if you’re the needy one? (And you are, as you surely know, much of the time, however it looks to the lookers.) There are neighbors and nurturers and need-meeters enough for you, a lifetime full of them and then some.
Take heart, kittens. Do the work — and love is work! — of today, knowing that loving each other to life is not the work of a day. You are not alone.
Neither are you, Puzzle. And I promise I’ll tell you again, tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow.