Monday, May 31, 2010

Nest

We are nearing the end of the bathroom expansion project. It's been a long few months. We went out to get tile for the shower a few days ago, all that is left to do is that and paint. Ah, the tile. A story for another day. As we were unloading the back of the van (for the first time) and piling it on the porch, I noticed something. Something odd.

My first reaction that it was kids. Or my crazy neighbor. But then I looked closer at it and realized that it wasn't what I thought it was.

What looked like a dirt clod thrown against the side of the house, up at the top of the front porch, wasn't. It was fresh and damp still, with little sticks and grass mixed in. And it looked like it was put there on purpose, not thrown haphazardly up against the side of the building.

Someone was trying to build a nest.

Tom and I were sitting outside a bit later and noticed them. The two of them. The confused birds, clearly agitated that we had interrupted their nest construction efforts. Flying between the houses, darting between the branches of the trees, but never landing anywhere.

I wondered why they would even try to build something there. There isn't any support beneath the nest really, just a tiny piece of a ledge. It's covered, but not sheltered from the wind very much. There are many other, larger birds in the area, with reputations for stealing from nests. It's hard to imagine this being the kind of place one would want to build a nest.

After dinner, I went back out to be alone with the setting sun. I also wanted to see if the birds would come back. They were still unsettled, flying about.

She's trying her best to build a home for her babies. She thinks she has chosen the perfect place for them. But it isn't. I want to pluck her out of the sky and tell her that she doesn't belong here. That this isn't the right place for her. That she needs somewhere safer. Somewhere that there is more protection from the outside world. Somewhere that her home won't be perched so precariously on a tiny ledge, ready to fall at any moment.

In the middle of my daydream where I was talking to this mama bird, I realized why her situation is so near and dear to my heart. And it has nothing to do with the inconvenience of having a nest on my front porch. It is because I see in this little bird so many things about my life.

I am so much that mama bird.

We came here, not knowing anything about the area. We thought we were doing the best thing for our babies. But we've been teetering out there on a ledge, ready to fall so many times. We haven't been safe from the outside world here. And I feel like here isn't where I belong.

I think, like her, I've tried to build my nest in the wrong place.

Or at least it feels that way.

Maybe I'm reading too much into the plight of this little bird. Maybe I'm seeing something that isn't there.

Or maybe, just maybe, this mama bird was sent to my home for a reason.

Maybe she can build this nest and protect her babies and live happily ever after. Maybe here isn't the wrong place after all. Maybe it just seems like it right now.

Or maybe she will realize it won't work and find somewhere else. Away from here. Only time will tell.

I'm rooting for her. I'm rooting for us both.

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