This is letter ten.

This letter is about beginnings, blankets, and my cat Tinkerbell.

We own a very comfy but giant and unsightly overstuffed recliner that I was juuuuust about to ditch right before La Pandemica Global came to town.

The reason we hung on to that chair for so long is because it was Tinkerbell’s favorite spot. Our petite kitty liked to nestle in her fuzzy blanket on that chair – or, better yet, nestle in her fuzzy blanket on our laps while we reclined in the chair.

(The reason we STILL have the chair, several years after Tinkerbell’s death, is because my husband has a sentimental streak a mile wide and doesn’t like change – which works very much in my favor when it comes to being his spouse, but not so much when it comes to negotiating the “refreshment” of our home decor.)

One day, Tink hopped up onto the chair before I had the chance to arrange her blanket for her. I attempted to maneuver her blanket under her but, diva that she was, she became very upset that this member of her staff was scrambling with last minute preparations, and so she refused to help.

At our impasse, she stood there, at the back of the recliner’s seat with her front two paws on the blanket and her back two paws off the blanket. I was trying to get her to step forward so that all four of her paws would be on the blanket which would then allow me to easily slide it into place.

As we ridiculous humans do with these cute, funny furballs who quietly distain us, I squatted there for several minutes, explaining to her that I was trying to give her exactly what she wanted but she needed to make the first move in order to get it.

I remember saying, over and over: “Tinkerbell, you have to go first here. You have to go first, sweetness. I can’t get your blanket right until you take a step forward. You first, then me. You first, then me.”

And then I froze.

I was struck by the notion that this is probably what the Universe (or whatever is “up there” peering down at us) has to deal with when it’s dealing with us.

We gripe and moan (repeatedly) about what we want and all the while the Universe is up there saying, “Yep, got it right here. Would loooove to give it to you right this very second… but you have to go first. You have to take a step forward first.”

Step of trust first, cozy blanket reward second.

That little moment happened over five years ago, but it was one of those blinks of insight that has stayed with me ever since. I think about it each time I’m taking my first step of trust on a new project or path.

Wishing you the very best,