Reflections on Life Thus Far

My life. My story: Exploring mental health, spirituality, meditation & random thoughts I have



Life is testing me right now because after months of letting the housecleaning get put on the back burner it’s caught up to me. We have rats (roof rats) and I am really p*ssed off because I am the one doing all the cleaning now. My dad is not tidy and rarely cleans up after himself. Maybe I should cut him some slack but it feels like he doesn’t care about the clutter and dirt and he leaves it for me. In fact if it were not for the rats I likely would not have been motivated to clean up and declutter. So in that respect I am grateful for the rodents.

I’ve been trying to trap them humanely (catch and release) but they have evaded capture


Roof rat on top of a bird feeder. Pic is public domain.

thus far. All I hope for now is to eliminate the food sources and clutter so they will find somewhere else to live. Cleaning up rat poop is not fun and makes me feel worse about how slack I’ve been in keeping house these past months (prior to when I spotted one late in May). It’s like this is my punishment for being depressed and not having the motivation for keeping a clean, tidy home. Now I have no choice but to clean and declutter if I want the rats to go. Technically I have only ever seen two but I am sure there are likely more. Why do they have to be so cute? It would be easier to hate them but even now I am only angry over their unsanitary practices (i.e. pooping in places that are not the toilet, or leaving food they found before I smartened up and put the food in sealed glass containers). Honestly, I am really grossed out by their poop and have trouble falling asleep because any noise I hear makes me think of the rats. It’s wearing me down.



Roof rat. Public domain pic.

There’s just something about having a rat problem that makes me feel horribly dirty. I wish they would just leave and not return. They are making a lot of cleaning work for me and I do not like it! The grass, trees and rose bushes have to be trimmed too since they likely hide in such spots. Gosh, I feel like there is an awful lot to do so they will hopefully leave. Even if I was alright with killing them (I’m not) it would still be necessary to do the cleaning and decluttering so they don’t come back. As it is though I don’t want to kill them because they are dirty and messy but not any worse than humans. Plus they are cute and it’s awfully hard to murder a small furry creature that simply wants to live somewhere and have something to eat. I just hope they don’t damage anything important like pipes or electrical wiring.


©Natalya, Reflections on Life Thus Far, 2016.



Totally Random….

Art by Richard Kolding

Recently I realized all my favourite animals are considered pests and annoyances to many people. For example, I love raccoons, squirrels, mice, rats, possums, opossums, pigeons, bats, crows… well you get the idea. Anyway it made me think perhaps I love these animals because they remind me of myself. The animals I prefer are seen as either odd, annoying or something you have to get rid of. In some ways I suppose they’re marginalised or underappreciated. Yes, I love more popular animals too but my heart is with the animals too few people embrace. So I think this symbolises how I see myself in relation to the larger culture I inhabit each day.

I don’t mean to suggest I see myself as a rodent or pest but undervalued perhaps would be apt. Of course part of this is from me not valuing myself as highly as I ought to in spite of having better self-esteem than I used to. It would be easy to place the blame on the larger culture I live in saying I’ve internalised their messages around what is worthy and what isn’t; but I think responsibility is shared and I have to learn to see myself as more valuable than I do. Don’t get me wrong though, I have the ability to see my worth it’s just a struggle at times when I lose focus and compare myself to others. Comparing one’s self to others is one of the quickest routes to low self-esteem I can think of. Do I manage to abstain from comparisons all the time? No. But I am doing a heck of a lot better than I ever used to and that is what’s important for me. If you’re going to compare yourself to anyone it has to be yourself. If you are in a better place than you used to be that is all that matters-not where you are in relation to someone else.

Do you struggle with comparing yourself to others or feeling less valuable than you really are?

©Natalya, 2014. Reflections On Life Thus Far®