When Babies Leave the Nest
A mother robin built her nest by my front door this year. How hard she worked as she placed the mud for the foundation and then applied the twigs and branches with the precision of an engineer. Her work was full of artistry and love. She then laid her eggs and a different process began. She sat for hours on the eggs rarely leaving to get for food for herself. She demonstrated deep dedication to her purpose.
She didn’t seem to mind me being present as long as I didn’t look at her for more than a second or two. If I did look longer she would immediately fly away but would return as soon as I went about my gardening leaving her and her nest alone.
Finally after a couple of weeks the babies hatched and the scene changed drastically. It moved from quiet dedication to frantic provider. She became very busy flying back and forth. Out she would go in search of worms and bugs to feed her two babies. These little beings with their mouths open wide constantly and their voices frantically chirping as if they were starving and on the verge of extinction.
I would watch her from my bedroom window so she wouldn’t be disturbed by my presence. The babies grew fast and then one day they were all gone. I guess they flew away on a new adventure. The nest was abandoned, empty now, waiting for a new life cycle next year.
Maybe that is the lesson for all of us mothers. Maybe we are like the little mother robin, providing a home and nurturing for the period of growth for our children and then it is time for them to fly away into their own lives. Maybe that is how its supposed to be.
Some of us will have longer relationships with our children and some of us won’t. It is not a given that relationships with children will continue and if it does it should be met with gratitude. Maybe that is my lesson from the little mother robin who visited me this summer, maybe I need to be grateful for the time I get to spend with my daughter and let go of the want for more.
Awe parenthood, what wonderful life lessons you bring.