We had watched for weeks as Mr. and Mrs. Robin worked on building their nest just outside our window. It was fascinating as the sticks and straw and grass came together to form a home. Then, one day the building stopped, the nest was ready and Mrs. Robin began to sit. She sat through the daylight hours and all through the night. She sat through wind and rain, calm days and hectic days. She continued to sit even on days when the lawn mower was very loud and very close. No matter what the day was like, Mrs. Robin remained loyal to her mission: to bring life into this world.
All of her sitting paid off. One day Mr. and Mrs. Robin were joined by three little Robin kiddos. They were very small and kind of fuzzy and very, very hungry. They had some growing to do and the parents knew it. Thus began the feeding process. It was constant. Mr. and Mrs. Robin busied themselves searching for food for their little Robin family and delivering their findings to outstretched necks and wide open mouths. The scene was repeated again and again and again.
The day came one day when the three Robin kids were too big for the nest. Things had changed and it was time to leave. We looked and they were gone. We said goodbye and pondered the miracle of life. On the next morning I was sitting on the patio just before sunrise drinking a cup of coffee, when I saw something out of the corner of my eye. In the dim grey of the early morning I couldn’t quite make out what it was, but whatever it was, it was very small and very still. As the sun continued to wake up the day, the light grew brighter and I realized that what I had been looking at was one of the Robbin kids. He/she had not gone too far. The fledgling sat their motionless, facing the nest that had been its home. The safety and security the nest had provided the day before, was no longer the same. Things had changed indeed.
As I continued to watch the bird on the back of the lawn chair, Mrs. Robin flew down from a nearby tree and perched next to her offspring. The mother fluttered her wings and chirped and then flew away again. I’m not positive, but I think momma was reminding Jr. that things were different now. The nest he was looking at with such longing was no longer the place it once was. I can hear her say, “There’s a big world to explore, fresh worms to find, new robins to meet and new nests to build.” In other words, little one, you have a life to live beyond the nest.
That is life…that is living… that is how it is once you’ve left the nest. Even if you were to go back and crawl in, you would quickly discover that it’s not the same. Each day is a special gift. Today there are new adventures ahead. So… Take one more look, spread your wings, and Leap off the Lawn Chair… FLY!!!