Last weekend, The Teen traveled with her Dad to an out of town volleyball tournament so on a rainy Saturday afternoon as the boys played with Legos, the Tween and I folded loads and loads of laundry and watched a marathon of Hoarders. Yes, my life is just that exciting but hey, chores combined with quality time is my favorite type of multi-tasking.
Frankly all the episodes of Hoarders, seem like the same episode over and over again, but this particular time our curiosity was peeked. This woman would put herself together quite nicely everyday and go out amongst the regular people of her community but upon returning home we would discover her dirty little secret. She, like most hoarders was practically buried alive! With broken toilets and showers that were used as storage units and no working kitchen to speak of, you can imagine the sad situation.
She was also a “cat lady!”
Here is where it got interesting. The clean up crew found a dead cat behind her dresser! A mere carcass! We were so grossed out but like a bad accident we had to keep looking. We were rewinding and pausing to be honest with you. The woman could no longer keep up her facade and broke down screaming, “Not Rat Cat… No, not Rat Cat!!!” (apparently it’s name was Rat Cat.)
We became obsessed with this woman and Rat Cat at this point.
Her story was that she had been looking for Rat Cat to take him to the vet but could not find him so just “GAVE UP!” and as she claims… ready? “There was no smell so how was I to know he was back there!?” We had to pause at this point and take in this information….
Now I am not a neat freak by any means, but I do like “a place for everything and everything in it’s place”. Although if you were to come to my house today at 4:45 and peek in the front window, a glance at the foyer might suggest that I hoard childrens’ shoes, backpacks or sporting equipment, but in general we are a tidy people and my daughter was having a hard time wrapping her mind around “Rat Cat Lady”.
She said, “Mom, how does that happen?”
Good question Sam.
I tried to explain the best I could by saying, “You know those days when you are sad, frustrated, maybe hurt or disappointed? You just don’t want to do anything? You don”t care how your room looks or your bathroom and you may even feel like you can’t brush your teeth or hair or even get dressed sometimes?” Now Sam is the eternal optimist and can find the silver lining in the grayest of clouds so I doubt she has ever felt that way but she was following me. She replied, “But eventually you get over it… right? I mean you could talk to a friend, or a parent or pray to God for help.”
Out of the mouths of babes….
She is right. That would be an idea situation assuming lots of factor that may not be in place. Honestly, my first blog idea after watching this episode of Hoarders was to encourage us all not to give up and that life is worth living to the fullest and let’s not let our dreams die.( behind the dresser… like a…dead cat???)
But then I thought, that is easier said than done and you just can’t tell people “to not to!”
“Sometimes people encounter big big blows of disappointment.” I told my daughter, “It can be hard to recover from. They may not have caring parents, good friends or a relationship with God. Or maybe they do but the hurt gets to be too much and then they give up, not just for a weekend, but for good and that kind of damage is hard to reverse.”
I will be the first to admit life is hard and I even look around the house and think, “Why do I even bother?” One or two days of slacking on dishes and laundry and you might as well bring the camera crew over and start shooting for tomorrow’s episode. On a good week, it is a daily struggle not to give up on a long list of things from my diet, the chores, good parenting, to pursuing God and loving my spouse. On a bad day, I can understand Hoarders and the plight of Rat Cat Lady.
What stops me from giving up for good?
I remember when I have been discouraged and disappointed and God stretched out his hand and used others to bring me comfort . I reached back and He made a way out of some very dark times, and blessed me beyond my wildest dreams with this fabulous family and an abundantly full life. I am eternally grateful and aware that life is a precious gift.
So I do not give up and I fight for what I have and live everyday to please God because I am so thankful.
I will also remember to reach out to those who are hurting and may not have anyone!
No support system, no friend or loved one to talk to.
I pray that God would show me those who are hurting and discouraged. Those who can see no way out. I pray that I could show them Gods outstretched hand and offer them comfort, not just say, “How are ya?” but really care about others. Be light, be life, be strength, be hope and encouragement.
It may be a matter of life and death (not just for the cat!) and no one should ever have to feel buried alive.
Samantha is well on her way to understanding the needs of those around her. As the rain came down and we continued to fold the laundry, we vowed to pull each other out of any funk, before we became Rat Cat Lady.
He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.
2 Corinthians 1:4