Wednesday, March 28, 2007

And As You Walk Through The Valley Of Death....

I have mentioned before that my Mom should be considered for the job of "Patron Saint of Dead and Dying Animals".

She can bring back animals from the brink of death with nothing but warm milk, a blanket and her obvious super powers.

I however can never save animals. Ever.

Last night the girls and Grace exploded through the door to breathlessly tell me that there was a bird in Grace's backyard that was not doing very well.

"Mom! Come see! It's so pretty. It looks sick. Can you save it? Hurry!"

So, I hurried. I found the bird (a starling, maybe?) lying on it's back in the wet grass. It was limp but breathing heavily. Nothing seemed broken. There was no blood.

I had brought with me a cotton place mat in expectation of needing to pick the bird up to examine it. I wrapped it up, explaining that I didn't think there was anything I could do. It seemed pretty sick. The only glimmer of hope that I gave the girls was the fact that I could make sure it was warm and safe from predators.

They know the deal by now.

I put the wrapped bird in the midst of the dead petunia in the hanging basket on the back deck. We all spoke softly to it..."Don't be scared. We've got you. It will be okay."

The girls gathered flowers and sprinkled them over the bird. They were overwhelmingly okay with just being there to make the dying a better experience. The desperate "Why Does It Have To Die!" attitude that I always had was not there with them. My expectations for the prospect of life was always much greater, having the Patron Saint for a Mom.

I think this is better.

There is no unrealistic expectation involved. The circle of life thing seems well understood.

Miracles are definitely put in their place at my house.

We don't mind being the Animal Hospice anyway. That Saint business isn't all it's cracked up to be.

7 Comments:

At 5:14 PM, Blogger Janie said...

fabulous. i'm sure birdie was very happy you came along. and it is such a healthy, peace-filled attitude you have instilled in your girls.

 
At 11:42 PM, Blogger Ant said...

Aw, the poor wee thing...

How about the animal paramedics rather than the animal hospice though? Mini-defibrillators, that kind of thing? (Though that would probably bring on the "why does it have to die" attitude again...)

 
At 6:20 AM, Blogger Christine said...

Aww you guys are so sweet. My sister and I used to bring home the sick birds we found too. Usually if they're sick enough to be caught by a four and six year old (in our case) they're too sick to get better.

RIP starling.

 
At 6:37 PM, Blogger This Girl I Used to Know said...

Awwww, those are just the sweetest little girls EVER!

 
At 3:14 PM, Blogger tiff said...

They're learning compassion, which is more valuable than expectation. Well done. :>

 
At 5:37 AM, Blogger Squishi said...

oh poor little birdie. I'm dreading the day (hopefully a long way away) i have to bury my birds. I do know with Bob the Budgie though, that he and his swing are inseperable in life and will be in death. I have this weird image of some archeologist one day uncovering him, finding the skeleton and a plastic swing and thinking... what the?

 
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