Stuck On the Path to Freedom

My main floor is arranged so that you can traverse it in a circle. The kitchen and family room are connected to a hallway that leads to the stairs that go up, the front door, and also the living room. The living room is then connected to the dining room which leads through another door into the kitchen.

If the double doors from the kitchen/family room to the hallway are closed, you can go through the door into the dining room and around the other way. Sure, you have to weave around the table, maybe shimmy by a chair if it’s been pulled out, and make sure not to run into the piano bench, but you still get to the same hallway.

In the mornings when I meditate and write and the kids are still sleeping, I close those double doors to the hallway. Not tightly, but enough so that the sound of the Keurig when I make tea doesn’t drift upstairs to little sleeping ears.

And the cat just sits in front of the closed doors looking at them. She wants to get to freedom, a treat, or something interesting on the other side of the doors, and yet she just settles her bottom down and stares. Or she gives up and goes and lies down.

My dog, when he was alive, would run around the alternate path for the slightest thing. He was a golden retriever – not overly smart or stupid – but enthusiastic. Maybe a little lacking in decorum.

I think about myself in terms of these creatures. What do I do when I’m blocked? Well, if it involves sugar, I’m definitely willing to be the dog, sniffing out any route to find something that might match my craving.

But too often I’m the cat. The other day I was feeling strung out from a busy schedule and too many nights of the same old routine. It took me a surprisingly long time to figure out I could get a babysitter and go out with friends.

I argued in my head that if I took a break that it wouldn’t really fix anything because I’d just want another and another. I hemmed and hawed about what I would do on my night out and if it would be more important than tucking my kids into bed. Then I stalled thinking about the possible upsets the next morning as we worked out our feelings for having a change of routine.

Sometimes I just want the doors to open so I can have a straight-line path`to what I need. In this case, fortunately I finally made my way around all the obstacles to find my way to taking a night off.

Often I have the same hesitation with other things in life — relationships I want to change or getting something published. When I can’t see the straight line path, I just bump them to the bottom of the list, and I don’t even meditate or pray for what could be different.

Note to self: When stuck, be the dog.

Please visit my personal blog at and I also post on Wednesdays at the Wise & Shine blog. And if you want to follow me, you can find me on Instagram and Twitter @wynneleon

(featured photo is the cat)

25 thoughts on “Stuck On the Path to Freedom

  1. My dad loved to razz me about the fact that I can take the longest way around to get to…whatever…whether I’m driving or working on a project…or, geez…telling a story. Thanks for this Monday morning wisdom, Wynne! I’ll take it…and who doesn’t want to be a dog? 😉❤😉

    Liked by 3 people

  2. So glad you were able to enjoy a night out, Wynne! And there’s something to be said for enthusiasm, isn’t there? It makes me think of the definition you’ve shared before… Especially when that enthusiasm is paired with determination. May we all be dogs! ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. What a great analogy, Wynne! I am too often the cat, just waiting for the right circumstances to appear. I love the imagery of that dog sniffing out some excitement, and it reminds me that line is rarely linear or straightforward… it more often resembles steps with or roundabouts. The path isn’t always clear to us at first, but it’s always there.

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  4. That is the brilliant thing about dogs- they just share their entire self with anyone who will glance their way, eager for any suggestion, opening or treat. But those aloof cats, the silent over-thinkers who want the world handed to them on a platter believing their way is the only way. Yes, be the dog and shake things up. Really, if you think about it, when have you ever seen a dog unhappy because they chose a new and better path?

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  5. I suspect life would be so much easier if I just thought more like my dog. It’s time to eat, let’s eat. Ha, ha. Life might be easier but we are who we are! You made the right choice for you. It might have taken a lil longer route, but you got there. Hang in there. Glad you had some me-time with friends!!!!

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  6. So you took your night off and your kids were okay? Not scarred for life? 🙂 I would often get nervous about that too, but now they have a routine down and are used to us occasionally being gone. So it’s better and easier for me and for them. It will be for you and for them soon, too, I’m sure.

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