I was telling him something about the weird dream I had and how I needed coffee stat.
However, as I said, “he” was a trashcan.
But, that didn’t stop me from wondering why he wasn’t following me down the hall to the kitchen. That’s when I turned around, realizing I’d been talking to small, black bin and not a large, black cat.
Buddy (the cat, not the trashcan) and I have been sharing space for 12 years now. And that’s why I expect to see him. Why I anticipate where he will be based on where he has been. Why I make assumptions – that feel more like facts – about how he’ll greet me in the morning, at the door, in the yard.
As a result, I see him often when he is not there. In the shadows, around the corner, in the periphery. Or even as I did today as I was looking at this photo a client sent me, imagining he was the dark spot under the patio table overlooking the canal.
How often do we see what we expect to see rather than what is really right in front of us? How often to do we think or feel or act based on what was or what we hope will be rather than what is? How hard it can be to even know the difference sometimes.
“You are not a cat,” I tell the trashcan. “You *are* a cat,” I tell Buddy as he appears from nowhere and weaves between my legs. Sometimes it’s as simple as that to regain the present: naming what is and what is not.
What’s one thing that’s *not* in front of you right now that you wish was or vice versa?