I adore cats. I love their independence, their sense of humor, and the fact that they are clever, emotionally intelligent, and downright cute.
Recently, my husband and I were introduced to the cutest kitten (Piper) by a dear friend and her daughter who were fostering her for an Animal Shelter. We fell in love the moment we saw her. And you know what? This little furball has taught me so much about myself and life already. While none of these lessons are exactly groundbreaking or earth-shattering revelations—they're more on the "the simpler things really are the best" level—I still wanted to share ten things that my kitten has taught me (so far)!
Cuddling can heal almost all heartaches.
Cats and kittens are the best cuddle friends. They are clean, warm, soft, and furry, always up for a cuddle-nap. If they are particularly happy, they will also purr while they cuddle with you (or, like Piper, on you). These cuddles are unconditional, loving, and all-accepting – no matter what. I truly believe that hugs and cuddles can be healing. It grounds us, helps us accept where we are in the warmest, and fuzziest ways.
Be comfortable in your own skin.
One of the most important things I've learned from my kitten is that it's okay to be yourself. Cats are very independent, and they don't worry about what other people think of them. They go about their day (even if they are tearing at your couch) like that is the most natural thing for them to do. They are happy and content in their own skin, not self-conscious about how they appear to others. As humans, we often dwell on what “other people will think”. All we need to do is to stop worrying so much about others and focus on being comfortable with ourselves, to live our own truth.
While we all know this is what we should be doing, it's something completely different to see someone (or a kitten) actually practicing it. What's more, Piper is also super comfortable with us, just the way we are. She is always up for cuddles, kisses and playtime.
Never ignore hydration.
My kitten drinks water every few hours. You don't even have to prompt her, she's just so well-hydrated that it comes naturally to her to keep drinking water on a regular basis throughout the day. She drinks water when she wakes up, eats, after playing, after she cleans herself, and even before bed.
Water makes up 70% of us. We need to drink it in plenty. We all know we should drink more water. And nothing is a better reminder of it than seeing my kitten lapping up water every now and then.
Soaking up some Vitamin D is essential.
Vitamin D is important for bone growth and maintenance, as well as good muscle function. It’s also considered an essential vitamin because the body can’t produce it on its own, so you need to get it from external sources like sunlight or food (egg yolks are a great source).
The best way to absorb Vitamin D is through sun exposure. And my kitten means business when it comes to getting some sun. Every morning when she wakes up, she sits in the brightest window soaking up some rays while stretching herself (dare I say while doing Yoga!).
Playing is important.
When we were young, we spent most of our time playing. Sometimes playing a structured game, other times just playing make-believe. Our imaginations ran wild, and creativity had no process, it just flowed.
And then we grew up.
Work and adulting became more important, so much so that we stopped playing altogether.
One of the most important lessons my kitten teaches me every day is the importance of playing. There is always time. And no fancy cat toys are needed. Normal household items are enough. Even an Amazon box will do. My kitten also loves sprinting, jumping, and running after balls.
It's okay to sleep the day away.
We often run on the hamster wheel. We wake up, load up on coffee, and try to be productive all day, most of us trying to do things we really don't want to. At night, we stay awake thinking about things that we did not accomplish or worrying about the day ahead. While working and following our passion is important, it is equally important to sleep the day away occasionally.
Taking a break and getting much-needed rest is always at the bottom of our priority list. Our bodies perform their most essential functions when we are asleep, including repairing our bodies. Making time to laze around, catch up on sleep, and just plain do nothing is important for our physical, emotional, and spiritual health.
Cleanliness is important.
Cats and kittens have a cleanliness meter built-into them. They don't like dirt or dust and will work hard to keep their fur clean. Cats also have a heightened sense of smell that can detect even the smallest amounts of chemicals in the air.
They lick themselves clean, if they use the litter, they dig and hide their business, they lick the food tray clean and in general, always smell great. As a result, they are rarely sick (especially if they are a house cat).
While all of us know the importance of cleanliness, for me, this translates to always being ready, comfortable, and presentable. Ready to play, sleep, and even cuddle.
Even if you pour out the whole bag of cat or kitten food, they will only eat enough to fill their tummies. Cats rarely overeat, no matter how tasty the snack.
We humans on the other hand, often eat not because we are hungry, but because something just tastes great. While it is okay to indulge every now and then, taking portion control seriously can really help all of us.
Importance of being curious and observant.
Cats and kittens are very observant and curious: they notice everything around them. When a new object appears in their territory, they want to investigate it further—and when something looks out of place (like a locked cabinet), they want to get inside! They can even sit in one place for a long time, just observing something, learning everything about that thing.
In a world of constant stimuli, we often get distracted by our devices and screens. These little cuties remind us to focus on the task at hand and gain a deeper understanding of the world around us by observing longer and more often.
That cats are amazing.
Cats are amazing. They’re beautiful, cute, and fun to watch and play with. And when it comes time for a snuggle session? Let me tell you: there is nothing finer than a cat in your arms.
As you can see, cats really are amazing! I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading this list as much as I enjoyed writing it. And if you’re lucky enough to be a cat owner, maybe these lessons will make your relationship with your furry friend even more special. Just remember: snuggling is important, but so is playing hard! I’d love to hear about your experience with your cat or kitten in the comments.