On Sunday the kids and I were at my mom’s house for a while. As we were in the kitchen we heard a thump into the wall of the house outside. We looked at each other and wondered what it could have been. She said she had been hearing thumps all day so we didn’t think much of it, but a few minutes later I went over to see if it was anything. It was a dead bird. A Pine Warbler to be exact. I was very upset and knew right away that I was going to have to take care of it. I said; “Oh, no!” and my mom said: “What? No, don’t tell me. If it’s dead I can’t do it! I can’t!”
She said that she was sorry, but that she just couldn’t do it. I told her that I knew that already because it has always been my job to take care of dead animals and things. She cannot handle any of that or any sight of blood or injury unless it is her own. I have had to deal with those things since I was a child. I do not know if I placed some sort of wall up for me to be able to handle those things or not. It would seem so because I take on a completely different persona when I have to collect and dispose or bury a dead animal. I had hamsters, a gerbil, and a cat that were pets that I had to take care of when they died. When my mom’s bird died she couldn’t handle that I believe my step-dad took care of that because I can’t remember or I blocked it.
Any other creatures that died around the house I would have to get rid of as well.
We had mice, frogs, worms, and various other critters that I cannot recall, but I distinctly remember my mom screaming and me handling it. When I saw that beautiful bird the other day I held it together and took care of it. I scooped up its little body and examined it and felt so sad. However, when I got into the car later, I lost it. I just sobbed. All of the memories of having to handle the deaths of animals flooded me. I was really upset as well because I am trying so hard to disconnect negative memories from music, things, or events in my life and I just got so angry at God at that moment. Why? Why does this stuff happen? Why can’t I just have a flood of good memories and some freakin’ peace in my life for a while? Why can’t I just have the joy and happiness that I long for?
And then I came out of it.
Though I admit I am crying right now because it is a bit overwhelming. I am sure it has a lot to do with all of social activity, being alone with kids for so many days, planning a garage sale, and the other stuff I am working through. I was determined to not let the song that I had playing in the car be ruined. Daniel loves the new band that I have discovered so I do not want him to ask me why we can’t listen to them ever again. I listened to the CD and I refused to let the negative feelings sink in. I thought of good things, other things and I focused my mind on how beautiful I thought the bird was. It had the most beautiful green feathers and yellowish neck. It was so bright and vibrant. I noticed each feature on it as I picked it up and looked at its eyes.
It’s frailty in my hand, I held a huge amount of wonder and admired it’s exquisite body.
The little bird had a story. I wondered if it was trying to escape a predator since there were huge birds flying around the wooded area in the back. I wondered why this superb little creature would fly into a wall. I wondered about its life. I also wondered why it was so important to me. Why do I care so much for creatures and the goings on in their daily lives? Sometimes that makes me cry or I get frustrated with myself because I wish that I didn’t. I wish I could go along in the world and not see, hear, or feel things that others seem to not notice. Then, I quickly remove those thoughts because I think that it is much better to have a life like that than to never see.
I really have no idea why I am writing this.
I just needed to process the emotions that I am trying to escape. I need to realize how I was affected by having to handle things that my mom just could not. I needed to see how I have caused myself to shut down during those experiences, but never dealt with them. And I needed others to know that the little Pine Warbler existed, it mattered to me, and it was beautiful.
I am reclaiming some songs for me, they all connect in my strange way.
I Wish I Was the Moon Tonight-Neko Case
Wayfaring Stranger-Johnny Cash
Young Blood-The Naked and Famous
Firelands-“The Best of Celtic Music”
Walk-Foo Fighters (Because I think this video is hilarious and the song makes me get crazy wild dancing.)
Oh, and I like David Grohl’s teeth. Lol!
For the Pine Warbler and all the other creatures I have hurt for, a smile and song for you today.