Wednesday, September 01, 2010
Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day
If there is anything I've learned these last two years, it's that the world is a dangerous, sad and unpredictable place. I know that nature can be both beautiful and brutal. In spite of that knowledge, some of it on a visceral level, I was wholly unprepared for what I woke up to this morning.
I opened the door only to find that our little nest with the sweet dove family had been knocked from its hook by a predator. The geranium basket was sitting on the hedge, full of feathers, but the nest was completely EMPTY. NO babies, NO mama. Just feathers everywhere. It looked like a crime scene.
Here is the geranium basket sitting on the hedge. I suspect a cat simply walked across the railing of my porch and swatted the pot with it's fragile cargo. It made safe landing on the hedge, but was then perfectly positioned for easy attack.
I could see from the mixture of long mama feathers and short downy baby feathers, that Mama put up a huge fight to protect her babies. There were signs of struggle as the feathers covered an area three feet in diameter.
My heart just absolutely sank. I got a lump in my throat. I fought back tears. How could this have happened? Is anything safe anymore?
But the ground was covered in feathers, and it just broke my heart.
So. very. sad.
I lifted the basket with its empty nest back up on the hook. I called my husband and burst into tears, telling him the tragic story of our little doves. I called my daughters and did the same with them. I cried like it was my own child, and so I guess I was crying for that all over again too.
I cannot get used to the cruelty of death and the disappointment of life. It hurts so much. Even when it's just a family of Mourning Doves.
I had an appointment, so I donned my sunglasses to cover my red eyes and blotchy face. While I was out, my daughter, JoAnne, came and cleaned up the mess. We wanted to protect the neighborhood children from seeing it. They've been watching the unfolding story along with us.
When I returned home, I found the father bird, sitting on the ground under the nest waiting for his wife and babies to return. That undid me. It broke my heart all over again. It's too close to my own story of loss, and all I could see was my husband waiting for our son to come back.
Mourning doves mate for life, so his little grey dove of a wife isn't returning, either.
I went in the house and had a big cry/why? session with God.
My daughter, Jaime, knowing how upset I was, brought me flowers.
I've been in and out all day, checking on the daddy bird, who faithfully sat at his post.
(story continued below)