Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

21 Nov

I’ve been thinking a lot about birds this week. I don’t think it’s tomorrow’s turkey-fest that has inspired me, either.

I live in an urban neighborhood. Even with all the traffic, the houses, the noise, the pollution, the cats, it’s quite a bird sanctuary. In the 14 years that I have lived in this neighborhood, I have seen crows, woodpeckers, hawks, finches, canaries, cardinals, blue jays, flickers, mockingbirds, doves, chickadees, wrens, owls, and, of course, the many different varieties of sparrows. There’s even a blue heron that hangs out at the creek in our park sometimes. I have always been amazed at the number of birds who are city-dwellers like me. City living has its challenges for our feathered friends, especially with the number of cats around here, but it also has many benefits. Many folks keep birdfeeders stocked up to encourage these many varieties of beautiful birds to stop by for food. I have quite a collection of  bird feathers that I have found on my walks over the years. If you remember my first blog post, then you already know that I like feathers and why I like them. I prefer to see them on the birds, of course, but hey, occasionally my hair falls out, too.

Found Feathers on a Drum

When I arrive home from work each day, I pull my car into the driveway which is next to a large wandering wild rose bush that is next to the front porch. Almost everyday, there is a flock of several varieties of sparrows hanging out in that tangled mess of a bush, chattering away, hopping around, doing the bird thing. They seem to be a happy bunch. Sometimes in the summer, they are wallowing in the dirt of the garden on the other side of the driveway, taking a dirt bath, flying from the garden, to and from the rose bush, which is their safe haven, I guess. I like to sit in my car and watch them sometimes. On Monday, when I pulled into the driveway, there was a beautiful hawk standing by the rose bush. I’ve seen a hawk in the front yard and on the porch before. I always assumed she was catching mice, for which I have been very grateful, since that cat next door is a lazy slacker, not doing the job she was meant to do on this earth.

But Monday, the beautiful hawk was obliterating a sparrow (or maybe more than one sparrow, given the number of feathers remaining) by the rose bush. The hawk was undeterred by my arrival, too. I didn’t notice what she was doing at first. Then, when I saw the pile of feathers all around her, I watched in both horror and fascination as she devoured her lunch. Many thoughts came to my mind including, “Today’s a really bad day to be a sparrow.”

Then I thought of a song that I heard many times growing up. “His Eye is On the Sparrow.” The song says, referring to God, “His eye is on the sparrow so I know He [God] watches me.”

One needs to be really careful before one uses nature as a metaphor to illustrate the presence of God, because the second thought I had was, “God wasn’t watching THAT sparrow today.”

And then, my mind rambling on, I thought of a friend of mine who is having a rough time right now with family illness and job changes. She might even feel like God is nowhere around and the hawks have gotten to her as a result of God’s absence. I know I certainly would if I were in her shoes.

So, that’s where we, those who love her and care about her step in. I really believe we are to be the presence of God in other people’s lives, especially during those times when they feel completely abandoned by God. I certainly am not God, and can do nothing to change her circumstances right now, but I can be with her, listen to her, think about her, pray for her, and support her in the best way I know how (which usually means going out to a nearby Mexican restaurant for dinner.) I can watch out for her, keep my eye on her. I am pretty sure she knows that she is loved by her friends, and that we’re paying attention and watching out for her.

That’s a lot of what I have to be thankful for this year. Friends. I have some really great ones. I hope I can be a really good friend, too. I also have some new friends, which makes me happy and reassures me that I have not become a sour-puss as I have gotten older. I worry about that, because I’ve seen it happen!

And I am really grateful for my XLH “friends” who are out there. I have never met another XLH-er in person. (Since it occurs in 1 in 20,000 people, I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised by that.) But thanks to the internet, I have “met” some people through this blog and through the XLH Network that share this odd condition with me, and it makes me feel like I have found my “flock” of fellow birds out there. They have been very supportive the past several years through their conversations on the network, and they probably don’t even realize it, since I have mostly just read the conversations rather than participated. The one or two times I asked for some advice, though, many willingly jumped in to offer their wisdom and concern.

So, this year, I raise a glass of cider to my flocks of friends, of many varieties, for whom I am very grateful! Happy Thanksgiving!

Copyright S.G. Hunter and Banjogrrldiaries, 2012-2017

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