The kitten syndrome

Kittens. Sometimes cute… sometimes not. They can be cute on posters: fluffy, wide-eyed, posing in grassy fields with butterflies and wildflowers, or clumsily crawling out of baskets or present boxes with big bows…. But have you ever seen one get mad? Why do you think the term “cat fight” exists?

Now, some people are cat people, and some are not… but for the sake of this spiritual application, let´s set all prejudices aside and focus on the moral of this example.

So, let´s recap: sometimes kittens can be pretty cute, especially when they’re posing or when they´re being petted and caressed, but if you startle them or make them feel uncomfortable - and sometimes with no cause at all – they can transform into clawing, hissing, and not-so-cute little monsters.

God is so good! He has put so many examples all around us, in His creation, to help us reflect. We should constantly thank Him for giving us so many things that can help us grow as human beings and grow in love for Him!

Let's reflect a bit on this example… Do I act like a kitten sometimes? Am I cute and cuddly only when I´m posing for photos, when I´m around certain people, or when I want to get something out of the situation to my own advantage?
Am I cute and cuddly only when others caress my pride, my ego, my self-love? Am I affable simply when I get what I want; when the attention is on me; when everything goes my way; when others say good things about me and give me compliments? But when I´m not posing; when I´m not the center of attention; when people do things that bother me or that hurt my sensitivity; or when I´m out of my comfort zone, do I turn into a little monster?
When everything goes my way and everyone’s being nice to me, cute and cuddly, but if something doesn´t go how I would have hoped or someone hurts my feelings: Claws! Hissing! Things get ugly!

Now, whether you suffer from a grave or acute case of kitten syndrome, fear not! Perseverance in the battle and God’s grace will assure your cure.

There is one thing you must do to be able to overcome this syndrome: stop wanting to receive and start trying to give. In other words, don´t always be looking for what others can give to you, how they can make you happy, but try instead to make others happy. Try to create a good environment around you, discovering even the smallest things you can do to make others’ lives easier and more pleasant. Stop thinking so much about yourself (how you feel, what you want) and think about what you can do for others. Pray. Instead of focusing so much on yourself all the time, focus your thoughts, your mind, and your heart on Jesus and on Our Blessed Mother; ask them how they would act… simply spending time with them will help you become more “normal” and “healthy.”

Remember that Mary, Our Mother, is the “tota pulchra”, “all beautiful.” She was and always will be beautiful, because her heart was and is pure and filled with love. The center of her Heart is her Son, never herself. Let us look to her as our model, imitating her and asking for her loving and motherly intercession so that we too may be less “self-centered” and more “Christ-centered.” Amen.