The past few weeks we have been watching a family of doves nesting in our basketball hoop. I had no idea they would offer me a lesson about letting go.
I first noticed them when I was sweeping the side yard and saw bird droppings. A lot of bird droppings. I thought oh, the birds must be perching on the basketball hoop and leaving their mess. When I looked up I came face to face, well maybe 8 feet, but face to face with a mother dove perched in her nest where the backdrop and hoop meet. I quietly moved away.
Of course, not to leave something so beautiful and special alone, I went and got my camera and took a picture, quietly and slowly.
I’ve secretly watched the mother sitting in her nest and over the past several days have noticed two more little heads pop up from under her body.
Before I knew it, those two little heads grew and were almost the same size as mom.
This morning I decided to quietly take my camera and try and get another picture. I knew it had to be done soon, because of how fast they were growing and since it is spring I knew they would be leaving the nest soon.
Being Forced to Let Go Sucks
To my shock and sadness, the family was not only gone, but so was the nest.
I think about how quickly birds raise their young and then boot them out, or in this case, talon their young out the nest. Little did I know they also pack up their home and leave, completely, lock, stock, and barrel. And, in this case, twig, leaves and padding. Everything! Gone!!!
When I think of my own young, it takes quite a bit longer for them to strengthen their wings and trod on off to the great big world out there. Occasionally they come home to share, visit, get well fed, food and spiritually, but then they move on. I do so miss when they were young, although I do not miss the daily duties that keep them moving and learning, i.e., lunches, laundry, house cleaning, etc.
It made me a little sad that I would not get to look into that mother dove’s eyes any longer, connecting and sending my love to her.
Until I was sitting at the computer looking out onto my backyard. There, under the grapefruit, tree were two doves. They were cleaning themselves, walking and just enjoying themselves in my backyard. Yes, of course, I grabbed the camera. But then, I just sat there and watched and allowed them to be in their moment enjoying themselves. I did too, enjoy them and myself, connecting and being in peace. Just letting them be. Just as I need to let my young be, themselves, growing, learning and experiencing the great big world we call life.
My kids are smart, fun, creative and have a great sense of right and wrong. I know they’ll survive whatever comes their way because like the dove, we loved them, unconditionally. We may not be able to be there to always protect them. Just love them and have fun with them and knowing they have the love to survive anything.