Monday, November 7, 2011

The Sand Hill Cranes

My son is 8.  He is rough, rowdy, goofy, serious, sweet, smart, totally all boy.  Wants to grow up and join the CIA to rid the world of bad guys.  Some have expressed that he is ‘obsessed’  (their word, not mine)with violence.  (Off topic side note, the ones who say this are the ones whose sons bully mine. Go figure) The ones who know him, know better.

My son tests himself and his emerging maleness by playing at swords and war, as boys have done since the dawn of the world. It is not obsession; he is readying himself to make a difference in an increasingly difficult world.  I do not shelter him from the craziness as much as other moms may, nor do I allow much exposure, in my view neither is fair. I tell him the truth in language he can understand.  He is safe and knows it, he also knows there are bad folks out there and only the brave and true of heart will stop it. He will be one of them. He is brave, empathetic, gentle, discerning and kind, above all he is kind.

We knew something was wrong when we saw these two sand hill cranes.  They were hanging out in the middle of the day in a tiny swale at my mother’s house.  One was down, seemingly resting; the other was pacing around the first, nervous, sitting, then pacing some more. 
These birds mate for life, their chicks stay with them until fully grown, they are beautiful.

Evan wanted to see what was going on, certain all was not well, he approached them very slowly, took almost 10 minutes to get the last few feet.  He moved gently, deliberately, talking to them all the while:
“Don’t worry”

“I won’t hurt you”
“Are you alright?”

“Just want to see if I can help you”
“I love you”

“Shhh, its ok, it’s just me, don’t worry”
This was an eight year olds litany of comfort to a wild animal.

He got very very close.  The one moved away, not too far, but as if to let Evan know he was trusted.  The other, stood, as Evan looked him/her over, He discovered a fresh wound, the right foot was missing, bleeding, painful to put weight on.

Animal control said to leave it for a day or so, was no doubt from an alligator, happens all the time, etc. etc. ad nauseum.

As Evan walked away from them, he said:
“Thank you for letting me get so close to check on you, we’ll be back to see how you are doing, remember that I love you.”

I only heard his conversation with them because I have Mommy hearing, they were private, quiet, meant only for him and the cranes.
The partner crane that had moved away now moved back to his mate and both watched Evan walk slowly and quietly away.  They felt my boys soul, like I do.

"We need to come back and check on them mommy"
"I know, baby, we will, tomorrow"
"Thank you Mommy"

And I am so grateful for that.

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