Thursday, August 19, 2010

A little birdie told me..

Monday afternoon.

I had had a particularly lonely and grief-stricken weekend.
It seems I can go for a few days feeling fine and then - Wham! Out of nowhere I am overwhelmed with feelings of pain and loss.

Monday afternoon, I was babysitting my two grandchildren. Little Nathan was down for his nap. I had given him his bottle upstairs and gently placed him in his crib, sound asleep. His sister was sitting in the living room watching a childrens' program on television. Otherwise, I would be hearing "Grandma - where are you?" "Grandma - I have to go potty!" "Grandma - is Nathan sleeping yet?" So with the TV as distraction, Nathan could be put to sleep undisturbed.

Quietly, I closed the bedroom door. Made sure the baby monitor was turned on. Tiptoed downstairs. Peeked into the living room. Jasmine was totally absorbed in her show. Good. Went to the kitchen to heat up my coffee in the microwave. Just then the dog barked to go out. O.K., so I took my coffee to the patio door and let Whiskey out.

It was a beautiful day. Sun shining brightly. Sky a clear blue. Too nice to be sitting inside. So, I took a couple of minutes to walk barefoot in the backyard grass (no I did not step in dog poop). I just enjoyed the feel of grass on my bare toes, and talked to David as I always do. "Why are you gone? Why don't you come back? Where are you?" Silly questions, but I ask anyway.

Heard a chirping. Ignored it. The chirping did not go away. In fact it became louder and more persistent. So I looked around. A bright red cardinal sat chirping for all he was worth on a telephone wire. I watched him for a while. Looked for the female. Could not find her. Just him. Sitting chirping as if trying to tell me something.

Walked back in the house. Left the dog outside lying on the grass, chewing on a plastic dog toy. Peeked into the living room. Jazzy was just fine.

"Would you like some juice?"

"Yes, grandma."
"Yes, please," I instructed.
"Yes, please," she repeated.

Poured her some juice. Re-heated my coffee (I like it hot, even on a hot summer's day).

Finally ambled into the living room to sit on the sofa beside Jazzy, snuggling up to enjoy the closeness of her three-year-old body; but still conscious of the sharp pain of loss - knowing David and I will never snuggle up together again.

Enough focusing on the pain! (I admonished myself). Looked up at the TV screen to see what Jazzy was watching. Childrens shows are short, usually lasting 10 or 15 minutes, so I thought we'd watch one last one and then turn off the set. As it happened, a new show was just beginning.

It was about a little robin who was sad. He was looking out of the window in a child's room. The robin had been injured and the child had brought him home. But now he was well and longed to be outside.

The mother of the child walked into the room, sized up the situation, and told the little boy to let the robin fly free. He obediently opened the window and the robin flew out. But a few minutes later, the bird was back. He perched on the child's finger, told him thank you for your care, I'm sorry I have to leave, but I must fly free now. I love you.
"I love you too," replied the child.

The mother explained to the child that the robin was happy now. It had to feel the wind on its wings, join the other birds, build a nest and go on to a brand-new life.

Nice little story.

And then it hit me.

That story was meant for me. It was a message from David saying he was well and happy - flying free now. Thank you for helping me heal, but I must go on to a new life.

No, no, no, I argued with myself. I must be going nuts. How can that be?

It's the timing. The precision of the timing. I had just sat down at that precise moment to cuddle with Jasmine and look up at the television. Had I not let the dog out, heated my coffee, watched that bird, put Nathan down earlier or later, etc. etc., I would have missed that show.

It's always the timing that brings home the message.

Oh, and I wonder what the cardinal had been trying to tell me?


Betsy Banks Adams said...

Hi Wendy, David is fine and he is telling you that you two will meet again in heaven.. BUT--he wants you to go on with your life, and even during the hurtful times, you need to keep on moving forward....

God Bless You... You are doing fine.. It's okay to grieve and to get it all out...

Hugs and Prayers,

Celia said...

I know for myself I could grieve quietly, internally until I was touched or hugged by some loving person and then the tears pour out. Touched by all you love except that one special one. I think the bird's message is that David is sending you his love in new special ways and always will. Not the same as a hug but special. It takes a long time, take all the time you need.
Hugs to you Wendy.

Grayquill said...

Reading your post today brushed feelings through my memory banks that are all too familiar. The loneliness of grief you spoke of is something that early on surprised me but later I came to accept.
I read your post today about the pens and it left me a little in awe. I also read the post about the coffee and it gave me a smile – such a sweet act. I don’t know much, but I do know grief is somewhat of a paradox. It is highly personal and yet very generic and however it unfolds for you in the days, weeks, months to come, whatever it ends up looking like, take comfort you are not crazy, you are normal. Every feeling, every odd thought you have is normal. When you find yourself laughing one minute and the next minute crying, that is normal. Thank you for sharing your very personal thoughts, I do not read them lightly. Hang in there.

joanne said...

perhaps the bird was telling you that he was fine but since you weren't 'hearing' him you found yourself at the right place and the right time for the message on the t.v. show. wow! I hope that made you feel a little less lonely for just a few moments.
take care...

Cheryl said...

What a beautiful and meaningful post my friend. I personally believe we are sent messages all through our lives, to deal with the situation at that time. Many people are not open to receive them.
You are not going mad Wendy......I think deep down you know that.
Your bond with David was strong, it will not diminish.

I wonder what the cardinal had come to tell you.......

Deep in my thoughts.....

mxtodis123 said...

Ah, Wendy what a lovely post. Those messages were meant for you. Your love is so strong that David is still with you, watching over you. That was his message. The Cardinal stands for intuition. Follow your instincts and believe in yourself.

Rose said...

Dear Wendy, The pain and loneliness you still feel is a testament to the strong and loving relationship you and David had. How wonderful, though, that you are open and attuned to all the signs around you. I can't help but think the male cardinal was a message from David, as Betsy said, to move on with your life, but that the two of you would meet up again one day.

Take care and keep your eyes open...there may be more messages to come.

Maggie May said...

Sometimes we do get a little bird or butterfly try to tell us something. If nothing else..... it lightens our heart.
Grief comes and goes. We must let it ebb & flow over us. Glad you have the grandchildren to help lessen the pain.
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Beverly said...

I wish I had your eloquence in expressing my feelings. How wonderfully you have expressed your emothions and your thoughts.

Your grief will not soon go away. I tell people that I do not want mine to go away. You don't ever "get over it." But I have chosen to be happy. It is a choice.

Heidrun Khokhar, KleinsteMotte said...

Oh Wendy I here you and get it. Seems you are able to find something very special in all that surrounds you. You are so capable at expressing it too! Thanks for sharing this special moment.

Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

Oh Wendy! So good to have you post again. I have been holding you in my thoughts and prayers. Grief work is so hard--thank goodness it comes in waves, and gives you a moment to catch your breath before it comes again. I think the cardinal was David, telling you, "thank you for your wonderful love and care...and thank you for letting me go free to feel the wind under my wings and fly free."

Snuggle that sweet baby and Jazzy, and know that David is there with you--in your heart and soul--just as surely as your grandchildren are.


Shammickite said...

Everything (the cardinal in the tree, the robin on the TV show, even little Jazzy sitting with you, and Baby Nathan sleeping upstairs) is telling you to accept what you cannot change, savour your happy memories of your life with your husband, and make a future for yourself. So much life left to live. Beautiful grandchildren to grow with. And be assured that your husband's spirit will always be with you, no matter what. Peace to your soul.

denverdoc said...

Man, you and David and the universe, all atune and aquiver with each other. I love it!

Grammy said...

Big hug Wendy, I believe every one makes wonderful points above. But as we spoke of before. it is your time to sore like and eagle. All the wings are sent to remind u to fly in this world. Pass on all your love to the next generation. And go on with your writing. U touch so many with your words. And U are meant to pass on more knowledge and love. So life your wings and fly. Knowing u have angles to guide your way. It is time for the next chapter in your life. I send much love and light to guide your way. Please remember to laugh and play. Now take the first step to happiness as u have so much more of it in store for u. Ur family, the wee ones and all of us are here to see u through.

linda kaserman said...

wendy - we met on the copd caregiving list and i've followed your blog off and on for a while - I've left the list recently (mom passed in june 2009)and admit that i haven't read your blog for a while.
I'm sorry to hear of david's passing. It must be very difficult for you.
Your blog post today really resonated with me. When my granmother passed away - cardinals would come and sit near me outside, i'd find comfort in sunsets - her fave. When Mom passed, i needed less comfort - she suffered so much. We have a glowing angel in the backyard given to us by her caregiver.
but your story today - it's one that i pass along to many - your loved one is out there - they're just waiting for you to notice. And they will send you a message - We know they're ok, they need to know we are.

Many hugs wendy, thanks for your blog. It's always been lovely to read.

amelia said...

I don't know how I missed this post and I don't know what to say either..
I have no words of wisdom because I know it's going to take a while and you will keep seeing and hearing things that will bring it all back.
I wish you the strength to get through these times..

Hilary said...

I love how you stop and listen to the messages which come to you during the course of your grief. Hugs to you, Wendy. I wish you strength.

Karin said...

You have such a depth and spiritual perception and you listen to the wonderful reassurances God is sending your way! His love surrounds you and comforts you in ways that you understand best. Thanks so much for sharing your deepest thoughts and feelings so eloquently! You are healing moment by moment and you will always have him in your heart! Blessings!

Beth Niquette said...

OH, my dear...well, the beauty of your story touched my heart so deeply. You have NO idea.

Thank you for sharing your life with us. ((hugs))

Dirty Girl Gardening said...

Lovely... thank you for sharing.

FranE said...

Thought I would stop by. Saw this post. The ladies are right there are many messages and lessons to be learned. After two years of Ned being gone, I am still on the learning curve and many times ask myself in the process what "have I learned." Nice to see you are so in tune to hear the messages around you.

marmee said...


it has been a long time. i am on the slow blog track with a life getting in the way.

i am glad you came to visit me. i know you have been on a long journey. it is time for the healing of you now. being a care~giver is an exhausting place to stay in. i am sure it is hard to let david will always have the memories.

i read your last three posts and it is no accident you visited my when i posted about the ducks...just one more sign from God to be comforted and full of HIs peace.

i pray that you will be filled with His loving kindness and His grace will be sufficient for all your needs.
His arms are where you need to find rest.
if i were there i would put my arms around you and give you a big hug. blessings dear friend.

Anonymous said...

Wendy, reading your posts reaffirms the fact that our loved ones show us in some way or the other that we're very much in their thoughts. Your words are so moving. May you have the strength to carry on. And thank you for visiting my blog and leaving your comment.



JeanMac said...

Sending love to you.

Beverly said...

happy for the moments and timing...

Beverly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.