Coaching Lessons from Five Little Kittens

I am writing this post to remember the short-lived life of five little kittens that came in to our family  2 weeks ago and now the last and the strongest of them all is ending at the grave too.

I never wanted to have a pet in the house because I cannot stand death and the thought of eventually losing them no matter how much you take care of them, simply because their life span is short.

Our first born son, now 23 used to have some pets as gifts but when they died early, we never replaced it and accepted that we’re not meant to take care of any pet in the house.

Our second son, now 18 had symptoms of asthma when he was young and we were advised that pet is no good for him, hence, we had a great excuse of having no pets in the house.

My father, now in heaven, loves fish and he set-up an aquarium for us.  He started his own aquarium and showed us how easy and simple it could be.   We then gave it a try too and enjoyed the experience of setting up an aquarium and selecting beautiful variety of fish that can co-exist.  My husband is great at setting the inside of the aquarium and indeed it gave us pleasure to see them grow and multiply.  Unfortunately, time also came when each of the fish started to die for different reasons and our big aquarium came to rest as well.

Our youngest, now 15, always wanted a dog in the house and countless of times, we said no.  I would always point her back to my husband who’s great at giving reasons why it’s a no.  It saved me from sharing with her my fear of losing lives in the house.

Then on September 2015, our first poddle puppy came home as a gift from a very good friend from the church.  We named him “Derpy” and instantly, he is truly part of our family. 

   

But the puppy got sick and we lost him after 2 months.  Bringing him home in a box from the vet clinic was such an ordeal!  I truly couldn’t bear it and again I was reminded why I don’t want a pet in the first place!  Luckily,  the same friend, empathized with me, agreed to gave us the brother of Derpy, and so we had puppy Liam on board on November 4, the day after we lost his brother.

Liam also got sick after few days later and had his share of days in the vet clinic.  And we went through the same ordeal again … I couldn’t focus at work and needed to ask prayers from church people who are also pet owners.  And since it was Christmas season, I asked GOD for the puppy’s life to be my gift.   Thankfully, I had my Christmas gift that year and Liam is still with us today.

Fourteen days ago, when we were on our way out for my medical check-up, we found five little kittens at the gate of our house. Newly born and eyes were still closed.  Instantly, we felt the need to bring them inside the house for fear of stray dogs catching them or passing by vehicles would hit them to death.  The kids took turns taking care of the small kittens while I lay on bed sick and could only hear their “meow” … 2 days later, I need to be hospitalized for my surgery and when I came home, there were only 4 kittens left.  Still, I couldn’t take care of them and could simply hear their sound. Few days later, another one died.  And when the 3rd got weak, my daughter brought it to me for some cuddling, unfortunately, it also breath its last. We’re down to 2 and we rushed them to the vet clinic, got advised and some rescue food but the 4th left us hours later.  Down to the last one with high hopes of survival.  I had my share of taking care of it like a baby, we took turns in feeding and watching through the nights.  But it continued to show signs of weakness and when slowness of breath occurred during feeding time this morning, I tried all I could to revive, provide warmth, prayed, cried and asked one more time for early Christmas gift but it all went to nothing!  And just like that, 5 lives lost in 2 weeks.

Cuddling the dead tiny kitten reminded me so much of the value of life.  They were ordinary kittens, no breed and left by unknown owner at the front of our house and yet they provided joy to our family and we count it as lost as each have to bid good-bye.  My sister told us that it will be very difficult for them to survive as they are very young and still need the milk and natural care of their mother.  And I wonder then, where is their mother now, can the mother cat truly feel the lost, do cats mourn too?

Then my profession as a Life Coach dawned on me …. I tried so much to help the last kitten to survive, took it by my side for hours during working, and slept with it in bed but still it wasn’t enough to keep it alive!  And I wonder, as put my heart and passion to what I do to empower people to be mentally fit and stay alive, could I really help them survive?

When I lost my father early this year, the ugly face of death tested my faith.   Papa had a beautiful departure and we thanked God for that but death is still death.  The forced separation and the impact of lost life continue to haunt me to this day. Death is spelled P-A-I-N and it is inevitable!  Can my profession help, to some extent YES, but life is finite and the best we can do is to make the most out of it.

Coaching Lessons From Five Little Kittens?

  • Life Coaching cannot replace the need for natural care from love ones and the nurturing comfort of natural habitat.  We can give our best shots as a life coach to a coachee but still, nothing will replace the love and care of the family to help a member improve in performance, achieve goals and stay alive … our family care cannot replace the natural care of mother cat which the kittens needed to survive.
  • Life Coaching have its right timing for it to breath life to a person.  If we force ourselves in as a coach when the person is not yet ready, not yet coachable then they too will die in some way … the kittens were not yet ready for simulated care and nurturing but were simply forced to be under our care.
  • Life Coaching is a skilled profession with tools, techniques and right resources.  A life coach must be equipped with the right tools and skilled to use it to properly to impact change and see improvements … the kittens must have a better chance of survival if they were left in the vet clinic equipped with supplies under the care of a vet doctor who is experienced in survival of young ones.
  • Life Coaching is an intentional relationship.  The coach plays a supporting role to the client in developing vision and goals for their life, the primary role remains with the coachee …. the young kittens were too little to know their goal other than maybe having the natural instinct for survival and our support system was truly in vain.
  • Life Coaching uses multiple strategies in empowering a coachee to create vision and achieve goals.  There is no single strategy that will work for all clients, hence, our role is to provide a process in which the client is encouraged to direct themselves through a working strategy … we might have missed it and needed to say good-bye to five little kittens but it doesn’t mean it will always be the case, we lost puppy Derpy but we have Poodle Liam today as part of our family.

In the end, no one is in control of one’s life — be it human or pet — freely He gives, freely He takes. Our role is to nurture and give it our best shot while they are still with us.  My profession as a Life Coach is a vehicle to help save lives but ultimately, it is in the hands of our creator. More than the fear of lost lives, I am grateful that I am given the opportunity to offer help and be used as instrument in keeping people alive.

It is still a beautiful day today despite the tears!  Good-bye little kittens, we will miss your “meow” for now but we are grateful for your moments with our family. I wanted the kittens to be a living memory of my sickness but I guess, God’s message is to let go and move on.  My fourteen days of medical journey ends today and I am saying hello to a healthier and stronger life.

 

 

 

 

 

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