How to Think Like a Cat - Stephane Garnier 2018
Your Cat Has a Huge Need for Love
Your Cat’s Day
6.30: HOME SWEET HOME, RETURN TO THE FOLD
· A moment of relaxation, hugs, caresses. The laundry and the voicemails can wait. Be like your cat and unwind after your working day. There’s no point scrambling to do the outstanding household chores. Slip into something more comfortable and take half an hour to sit down in peace, maybe putting some music on.
· Breathe a while before joyfully starting the second part of your day, the part that’s all about you, your whims and desires, perhaps phone a few friends . . .
· At this time of day, your cat’s only concern is most probably: ’Shouldn’t my dinner be ready soon?’ It’s a moment of great personal pleasure, since your cat knows that you will shortly take the time — unlike this morning — to open a pouch of salmon in jelly, the sort your cat loves so much.
· Six thirty in the evening is a little moment of relaxation, both for your cat and for you, a point where the day shifts from activity to relaxation. The best thing is not to carry your day’s fatigue or stress into your little world of comfort for the evening.
’Cats are beings made to accumulate caresses’
We all need hugs, kisses, caresses and other gestures of affection. And though many of us sometimes find ourselves with a deficiency of love, cats never hesitate to come and demand some tenderness from you when they require it.
Your cat sometimes needs to feel this emotional closeness with you, in the same way that we sometimes need to bury ourselves in a deep embrace with our partner and hold them tight.
Freud describes the first trauma in our life as being when the umbilical cord, that physical link to our mother and to her love, is severed at birth. Forever after, we try to re-establish that emotional link through all our relationships with others, be it love or friendship.
The more we suffer a lack of affection, the more we will seek it from others, drawing on it until we’re full, overflowing. Just like the cat, we withdraw physically from this source once we’re satiated with love . . . before returning to it again.
The frequency of our need for love also depends upon the love we have for ourselves. Some people are very cuddly, others not so much, for we don’t all require the same ’dose’ each day. But all of us need tenderness, hugs and emotional warmth to a certain extent.
We draw it from our partner and also from our cat, just like the cat draws it from us — think of all those times when your cat buries its head lovingly under your arm. That’s its way of drawing some love from you. See how it practically drools with need for this tenderness. It’s quite different from an everyday cuddle of simple wellbeing. And once that need for love and affection is assuaged, your cat will slip off your lap and go about its business.
We are just the same: needing, expecting, waiting for this vital love that each of us requires.
Just like the cat, or like a flower, we wilt a little more each day when deprived of love. It is for that reason that the human heart has never been able to do without this driving force called love.
We all need love. But you need to know how to give it in order to receive it. It’s a key condition for our happiness. What would life be like without love?