Last Spring, our little farm had our first bluebird couple take up residence in our bluebird house. My mother bought this gift for me the Spring I had had my cancer surgeries because I’d seen bluebirds at our feeder, and we hoped I might be able to invite them to stay awhile.
Three seasons passed, and bats, bugs, wasps, flickers, and chickadees made our home their home for a bit, but no bluebirds. Last year, I had resigned myself to appreciating these alternate creatures until one summer day when I spotted a male bluebird poking his head in our house one June evening.
Joy! I hid in the chicken run and photographed him as best as I could with my smart phone. He may not stay, but I was going to start documenting just in case.
Sure enough, he and the misses found it to be prime real estate what with the suet feeders and a few mealworms I just happened to sprinkle about. (I am not above creating the optimal conditions to keep my company happy.) Within a few days, they had woven a beautiful pine straw nest and began preparing for their family. A few weeks later, we had 4 baby bluebirds, and the Creator and I both delighted in wonder of these new gifts to the world.
Interestingly enough, at the same time, I noticed a bluebird couple in the trees behind my office. Many years ago, someone had nailed a wooden bluebird house high up on a light pole, and these two decided to put it to good use.
Between the pair at home and the pair at work, I learned much about hope and creation care last Summer.
As babies grew and fledged, the parents tucked away in the trees for Autumn and Winter. Even with seed and suet at work and home, I rarely saw them over the last several months. I assumed they had moved on to other houses in other neighborhoods where the mealworms were fresh, not freeze dried.
As Creation would have it, the first day of Spring brought with her a return of the bluebirds both to our farm and to my office! Joy! Pure heart-fluttering, warm-and-fuzzy tummy joy!
At each opportunity, I observed a bit then chatted with each couple. If you’ve never had bluebirds, they are quite social and will communicate with you. Last year, the daddy at our home would fly down and sit on top of the house when I drove up the driveway after work. If I didn’t walk down the driveway and talk with him, he would fly up to the tree by our back door and remind me that my priorities were out of order. Clearly.
Anyway, as I spent time with each couple, I realized that there is something to be learned about joy. It is best appreciated and inspired when it comes out of nowhere, when it is not the result of a wish being granted or a desire being met. Nope. Joy is at its most pure when it is least expected. Because when you are caught off guard, you don’t think, you only feel. And wow, what a glorious feeling it is.
For me, it was returning bluebirds. My prayer for you is that Spring will bring with her opportunities for the same.