I have a bird feeding station. It is one of those pole affairs with bits hanging off it. My first born bought me what became the start of it and gradually it evolved. What am I saying? There was nothing gradual about it. I do not do gradual. I am impetuous and given to whims and fancies. So of course, on receipt of first item, I rushed out and bought a pole, other hanging bits and vast quantities of seeds, fat balls and other delicacies (mealworms, anyone?).
True to my whimmy ways, pretty soon the filling of the containers fell to the Captain. It is not that I am bored of the birds. I love the birds. I just forget that in order to feed them, the containers need to contain food. That is rather the point. I would claim chemo brain for this oversight but we all know that it has ever been thus. The food I bulk bought eighteen months ago, had finally run out so today marked the day that I ventured forth to buy more.
It was an exciting adventure. But then we have long established that I do not get out much. Today is always the day that I begin to feel human again. It is a week since the poisoning and my body is beginning to recover. Hurrah! Celebrating with a trip to B&M may not be everyone’s idea of a good time but there we have it. My octogenarian mother slung the 10kg sack of bird feed around as if it weighed nothing while I trailed behind with the 400g tub of mealworms. I also picked up a keyboard for my iPad making this whole dead laptop scenario slightly more bearable in the short term.
Feeding the birds is something I find wholesome and nurturing. Perhaps I have Mr Disney to thank for that. But I have been sore in need of comfort these past few days. I have had bad news of the cancer variety regarding both relatives and friends and it has felt grey and dismal all around. FEC is notorious for messing with one’s head so the chemical blues will not be helping. But I have found myself seriously despairing. Birds are motiefs I frequently return to. I have joked about blue tits and robin redbreast here on more than one occasion. My Mum used to call me her little sparrow. One of my nicknames in time gone by was Big Bird (it will be my yellow feathers). So it is perhaps not surprising that the bible verses that speak of birds resonate with me too. Matthew 6:26 speaks of ‘the birds of the air’ that my ‘Heavenly Father feeds’ and says that I am ‘far more valuable to him they are.’ And according to Psalm 84 ‘Even the sparrow has found a home … a place near your altar’. These all speak of love and care and nurture so it is no wonder that I find feeding the birds synonymous with God. It is as well that God is less given to whims than me.
I know that my friends and relative are held by God’s hand. I believe that they will soon ‘dwell in [his] house’ and be ‘ever praising’ him. But I am so sad that this vile disease will be taking them from me.