One morning a few years ago, when I was working in a borrowed little cottage on a wooded hill, something in the window caught my attention. There was movement in the shadows under the tall pine tree. I could see something shadowy was sliding amidst the large rocks at the tree’s foot. Something said, pay attention.
I’m glad I did.
Moving silently, warily, but with the relaxation of an experienced competitor was a good sized female bobcat. Seemingly on her slow walk from the dense woods across the grassy field to either rest, likely since it was midmorning, or more hunting.
I followed it around and was gifted with a very good look at this beautiful creature from the window. She stood no more than 10 feet away in the sun, looking back and forth, considering her options. She continued slowly on and slipped under the fence into the high grass.
Perfect black ears with a single large white spot on each one. Big paws for her lean and healthy looking body, a stub tail, and not a spot on her golden tan coat. So much like my cat Simon in her form, yet her expression and movement confessed the wild hunter within.
This, as you can tell, made my day. I love the wild creatures.
Bobcat’s are a rare treat to see. Stealthy, strategic, and patient hunters, they use silence and keen observation to their advantage. I think the bobcat is a reminder to be quiet, and patient as we witness the events around us. Using the wisdom we glean from mindfulness and awareness, we can plan our course of action to manifest good without spending our energy reserves beyond repair. The bobcat knows well how to do this and thus can adapt and thrive even in the narrow hunting grounds of a largely suburban environment.
This bobcat, as is their custom, was solitary. One need not worry if there’s another close by, unless a female is raising cubs. They live and hunt in solitary fashion, content with their own lives and worlds and the company of nature. As I watched her walk away, I felt a pang of sorrow that she was leaving, and imagined for a moment that she seemed lonely. She wasn’t. She was simply alone. Alone with her task, her instincts, her world, her den, her warm full belly. She had enough.
And I thought of myself standing in that window in the little grey cottage bare of furniture, save my treatment table and guest chair. I smiled thinking how wonderful it is to have enough. Enough warmth, enough room, enough space to welcome others, enough exactly to do the things I want to do with nothing in excess to hold up or spend my attention on.
I felt for a moment like that precious bobcat; wise enough to be content and aware enough to pay attention so that I can adapt.
Reflecting on the moment, I thought about how sessions with clients are mostly silence and observation. Like the bobcat, we notice the important things when we bring quiet attention to the messages our bodies show us. And when we slip into awareness that we have enough within to know, and to grow, we realize that we have the capacity to adapt and to heal.