Getting Real

I came home from my morning walk and found that my feline assistant Trixie had grabbed her favorite toy and gone back to bed. I get it. It’s January. The weather is dreary. And toys are nice.

I bought this scurrying creature for her at The Dollar Tree on her first birthday, and she has loved it now for more than two years.

I’ll find it in my closet, on my desk chair, on a table, in the middle of the floor, and, quite often in the mornings, I’ll realize she brought it to the top of my bed in the middle of the night.

For a time, this toy had a little mechanical device within it. When you pulled the tail, it supposedly scurried like a mouse. That device is long gone – loved away through lots of jumps and carries from here to there.

To Trixie, I think this toy has become real.

I didn’t know about The Velveteen Rabbit, a classic children’s story by Margery Williams, until I reached college. Somehow I missed the tale of the boy whose love made a stuffed rabbit real. But I heard friends talk about it.

People long remember stories they hear in childhood.

I think often about Stone Soup, where this man was in a village long ago making soup out of a stone that he’d put in a pot of water. I’m not sure if this was supposed to be a picture of a scam or a display of genuine leadership, but people kept saying things like, “Oh, I’ve got some carrots. Let me add that.” Or “Here’s a little meat. Would that help?” And the whole community comes together to make soup that everyone enjoys.

It’s a nice tale. So much can happen when we work together to serve others. Hope you’ll remember some nice stories today about love, or community, or some other good quality.