My cat spent the night out and she’s still not home. This hasn’t happened in a long time and I’m worried.

Boo is an indoor and an outdoor cat, but she’s been mostly indoors since we moved to this new house 6 months ago.

I was the one that let her out last evening. I purposefully left the side door open and then didn’t wait up for her to come back in before going to bed. I called her once or twice, but that was it. I thought: “She’s been wanting to go out. She’s been waking me up every night vandalizing furniture in frustration. She’s capable and I’m tired.”

So I went to bed. And now it’s 5:15 a.m. and she’s nowhere to be found.

This is my struggle lately. I try to control things and arrange life so my people/animals/things are successful. They, in turn, have an entirely different vision of success, say “no thank you” and walk out the side door into a dark, scary, not-controlled-by-me world. The result can be debilitating for me as I wrestle with the anger/guilt/responsibility for their actions or inactions.

I know I have to LET. IT. GO. Let go of the anger, guilt, responsibility for things not in my control. But I am so afraid. Afraid of what will happen if I’m not working all the angles, all the time. This fear is powerful stuff and my mind is consumed with images of carnage and disaster and failure – all of which could be prevented if I could just control things.

I recognize that this ranting is folly and sound and fury. In my deepest, darkest heart I know that I am not IN CHARGE and that even if I could control MY things, I could never ensure the desired outcome, which is happiness and fulfillment.

I see this with Boo, my cat, because I could, of course, never leave the side door open and declaw her and lock that bitch down. I could control the fuck out of my cat. But she would be miserable and handicapped and diminished. And the things I love about her – her disdain, her attitude, her brashness – would be completely gone.

So really, what would that control get me? I would have my cat, but she would be empty of life.


She’s home! It’s now 6:00 and Boo just sauntered in. She seems just fine, thank you. In fact, she seems quite satisfied with herself. She’s lying here on the rug next to my bed, having rolled onto her back, and is looking up at me as if to say, “What’s all the fuss? Relax. You need to LET. IT. GO.”