Blog Post Courtesy of: Mike Hammond - VP General Manager RGL
A long time ago in a state far far away...
...a gentle farm dog burst in to the barn with a message for his master. Unlike the old "Lassie" TV show, this farm dog wasn't there to report that "Timmy has fallen in to the well!" Instead, he carried in his mouth an emaciated and injured kitten. The kitten's fur was muddy, its head stained with clotted blood. Who knows what had happed to the kitten; perhaps it was the lone survivor from a hungry coyote attack. But now finding its owner, the farm dog gingerly laid the listless kitten at the farmers feet.
Coincidentally, a young family was at the farm that day enjoying a fall family outing. [Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous. Albert Einstein]. The family adopted the cat, named him Mobi-wan (a mash-up of Moby and Obi-wan).
Ever since that day, Mobi-wan has been an integral part of our family. He’s helped us feel at home every day despite numerous relocations. Mobi-wan has helped us make a smooth transitions between at least four different homes, and a couple of time-zones and two countries.
Mobi-wan's attitude is unflappable; always the same despite his surroundings. Mobi-wan is always easy going, always uses his cat box, never hisses and pretty much gets along with anyone. He even gets along with our other pets: a Chihuahua-pug mix, a bearded dragon and a second rescue cat. Okay. Okay. Part of Mobi-wan's easy going attitude could be due to his childhood head trauma...after all, he has been known to drool a little every now and then. But, HEY... The relevant thing is this: Mobi-wan is reliable. He doesn’t run hot then cold. He’s the same uber-chill-easy-going personality ALL the time.
Which got me to thinking: Why do I sometimes think he’s the world's greatest cat ever, but other times think he’s the world’s worst cat?
For example, in the evening when I come home from work Mobi-wan seeks me out to greet me. He starts meowing and sits at my feet while I take my boots off. (Actually, immediately after taking my boots off they are kind of all steamy and unpleasant...and Mobi tries very hard to shove his head in them as far as he can. Then, he rubs his face on them and stuff. Weirdo.) ANYWAY. Every evening, same routine: Mobi meets me at the door; follows me around meowing for 30 minutes, continually cutting in front of my path in an apparent attempt to herd me towards his food bowl. Doesn’t matter how much food he has, it’s the same old routine every day. And I think it’s pretty darned ENDEARING. In particular, I like that he meows at me the whole time; like he's trying to talk to me. Love it. He's the world's greatest cat ever.
But here's the weird part...
Every morning it's the same routine: Mobi meets me at the head of the stairs; follows me around meowing for 30 minutes, continually cutting in front of my path while traversing the stairs in the dark...apparently attempting to herd me towards his dumb food bowl. Doesn’t matter how much food he has, it’s the same old routine every morning! It’s pretty darned ENRAGING. In particular, I don't appreciate that he meows at me the whole time; like he's trying to wake up the entire house hold! Hate it. He's the world's worst cat ever. I just want my coffee and some peace & quiet.
But, what changed from last night to this morning? Mobi didn’t change. I changed. My attitude towards the situation changed. I choose to encourage Mobi’s behavior when I get home from work. But I look for the spray bottle, and spray his annoying hide when he exhibits the same behavior at zero-dark thirty in the morning. I changed my attitude. Presented with the exact same behavior from Mobi-wan, I choose a different attitude.
And that’s what I wanted to remind myself of tonight, before I wake up in the morning and grab the spray bottle. It's all about my attitude. I may not be able to control Mobi-wan; he's going to drool every now and again no matter what I do. He's going to run in front of my feet. But I can control my attitude.
So, I guess this is a NOTE TO SELF: Choose your attitude. Make the most of whatever tomorrow morning brings. Be it the drooling cat that the dog dragged in, or whatever else that life presents me. I want to remember that I can choose my attitude. And if I forget, someone please gently remind me.
Editor's Note: Author and Evangalist, Charles Swindoll, wasn't blessed with the cat the dog dragged in, but shared some of the same insights as Mike in his poem "Attitude". We are glad to share it with you below as part of a powerful Daily Double.