While my DIL took the girls to Kindergarten Orientation one morning the week before school started, I took the boys to the playground close by.
If you cross the field, there is a creek below. We enjoyed the bright morning light shining on the spiderwebs, and they posed for a picture.
This is the creek that hosted all of the Canadian Geese and later on their babies, in the spring and early summer. Back then I would just see one or two ducks but many geese. This reminded me of that time.
My youngest son had posted this picture from his phone on Facebook of the duck’s eggs by the pine tree in his yard. He lives close to the park.
A few days later, I went down to visit nesting Mama Duck.
Had I not known from him that she was under the large pine tree I’d have never seen her. As it was, I walked around the tree twice before finding her in this cleverly camouflaged nest. Can you see anything?
A little closer now from a different angle :
She just stayed there quietly while I took a few pictures. I marveled at her composure. I did not try to get too close, nor try to touch her but surely she was afraid or apprehensive at my presence? Yet she stayed the course, and stayed on her eggs.
As I was snapping photos of her I kept thinking of virtues such as humility, patience, perseverance, and faithfulness.
Humility because while her Mallard duck spouse is garbed in brilliant colors she is plain.
Her clothing is plain because of her purpose…which is to be able to fulfill her mission, safely camouflaged in order to do so.
Looking at her I was reminded of human beings who work behind the scenes selflessly, or anonymous donors, versus the sort of people who get more attention due to their fine feathers.
As to patience, perseverance and faithfulness, there was heavy machinery clanging not too far away, a train going by in the distance, and then this strange human circling the nest taking pictures.
She made me think about how blessed the animal kingdom is, when you consider it. She’s got an inner programming to sit on these eggs and protect them. She’s got an instinct and intuition to rely on that tells her to stay there because I am harmless and mean her no ill will.
Now were she a human, just sitting there on the eggs and praying…God would tell her “it’s ok…this is not a situation that you have to worry about, such as a raccoon coming along. This is just some harmless lady. ” And then, being human, she’d say ” OH God spoke to me! But wait, no…that was probably just my imagination. And I’d be crazy not to worry…what if? And what if this, and what if that, and oh I just remembered something else to worry about and of COURSE God wouldn’t really answer me…what was I thinking! I must be nuts. I am not some saint that God would really answer.” And pretty soon she’d be shaking and a nervous wreck or fighting within herself between the several voices going on in her all-too-active mind.
( ask me how I know :)
Mama Duck had none of this turmoil. She had the “peace that passeth understanding ” and I probably learned more in spending 10 minutes with her than in reading 10 books about that.
I need to remember Mama Duck every time I worry about something, give it to God, and then take it right back to worry about again.
I need to remember Mama Duck every time that I consider words such as trust, and peace, and phrases such as staying the course.
Meanwhile, the creek was full of ducks when the boys and I were there, and I like to think that some of them were her babies :)
Back to the world of human beings and growing boys.
Even though they’d had their breakfast, I was informed, after being at the park for 45 minutes or so, that they were starving.
We came back home and they had a ‘second breakfast’ consisting of sandwiches, which was their request. And amazingly enough, in two hours time, they were hungry for lunch as well !
Personally I think that little kids just see their grandmas and it raises their appetites because everything taste better at Grandma’s house, right? I know that it did when I was little ! :)