Monday, March 29, 2010

My therapists

I've gone to various types of counselors throughout my adult life.  I've picked up helpful life skills from each one, and not a day goes by that I don't remember (and often apply) the words of at least one of them.  For the past few months, I've been trying something different: daily squirrel therapy.

My therapists show up at my front door early each morning- usually at dawn.  They expect payment up front.  To the casual observer, it may seem that I spend a lot of money on peanuts.  The most I've ever paid has been about $12 for a week's worth.  That's the cheapest therapy I've ever had.

These therapists have provided much-needed stability in my life.  They show up each day, come hell or high water.  They don't throw me any curves; they don't jerk me around.  They prove the theory that we teach others how to treat us.  If I'm careless and accidentally let my Chihuahua run out the door, that scares the bejesus out of the therapists and they may not return for a few days.  But if I'm considerate and cautious, I am rewarded with near trust.

Some mornings I have to rush off to work, but on the best of days I can sit in my chair and watch my therapists through the window.  There are normally six of them.  Winter is the best season for this activity, since the squirrels don't have to compete with the semi-hibernating chipmunks for the nuts. 

The blue jays, however, are another story.  On many days they snatch up the nuts, always weighing them by lifting various ones in their beaks to see how the weight compares to the other nuts.  Fortunately, the jays sleep later than the squirrels, proving that if you snooze, you lose.  I admit that I have developed a resentment toward the jays.  My therapists, however, prove unfazed by the jays, as they show me by example that my resentment is out of place.  These therapists apparently believe in and live by the concept of abundance.

On the best of days, my therapists accept payment in complete harmony with one another, with each therapist calmly and gratefully accepting his or her share.  I enjoy the sight of all six therapists munching contentedly at once.  They know how to give each other space.  Each therapist seems to be surrounded by an invisible boundary of a three foot radius.  How many therapists can teach boundary setting so clearly?

The therapists are not jealous of each other's nuts.  They mind their own darned business.  I've never seen a therapist grab more than one nut at a time, although I know they're capable of it.  They show themselves to be grateful for what life has given them, and willing to share their bounty, even with other species.

And how many therapists make house calls?


Aurora said...

That is adorable - and very wise:)

Lynilu said...

Wildlife therapy rocks. Absolutely!! I think that is a wise choice of therapy, Betty. I do that with the deer here. It's wonderful!

Big Dave T said...

I always thought dogs provided good therapy with their listening skills. Never thought that would apply to squirrels too. That first picture is begging for a caption of some kind.

B.S. said...

Thank you, Aurora.


B.S. said...

Dear Lynilu,

You make it seems as though there is such a thing as wildlife therapy! I guess for us, there is...


B.S. said...

Dear Big Dave,

I know what you mean about that 1st photo needing a caption. Or if i had your trick photography skills, I'd turn it into a profile pic like yours.


Anonymous said...

I know what ya mean...Nature
is such a wonderful therapist
and it's all free...We have a place
out at the Brazos River and when
I'm on the front porch drinking my
coffee there used to be a squirrel
who would drop pecans on me...
He was so cute...



Mary Ann said...

Hmmm, think I'll go out on the patio and look for a therapist or two! Love the photos and your outlook.

My Buzz on Vibes said...

There is something very calming about animals, either watching or interacting with them. My dog is my therapist, as he likes to chase any other potential therapists out of the yard. :)

Monogram Queen said...

I love that you appreciate your therapists and recognize their true worth!

P.S. I want a chipmunk therapist!

B.S. said...

Dear My Buzz on Vibes,

Only squirrel therapists work well as a team, i think!


B.S. said...

Dear Mary Ann,

I hope you found some!


B.S. said...

Dear Patti,

Chipmunks do not make good therapists! They are too flighty and frantic....