Tuesday, December 3, 2013
It all started with an EGG
I do not know why I tell these stories but maybe it is for someone to see were a spark can grow into a flame. When I was a little girl in second grade they had the lesson on hatching eggs. Each day I would run in to see if there was any tiny signs of life coming out to met us. I would hold my breathe and stare and stare.. I would each day get told by my teacher to "Get Away and SIT IN MY SEAT" I could not understand why the other children did not seem to care after the novelty wore off. I on the other hand could talk about nothing else at home and prayed that they would wait to come out until I got to school the next day.
On that magical day there was 9 sweet wobbly creatures laying on the towels when I came into the classroom. I screamed with delight and ended up sitting in the corner for my outburst. I sat there listing to the churping and so worried about the 3 eggs who still sat with no sing of life. Recess bell rung and all ran out to play. I stayed behind to ask the teacher what about those 3 eggs. She replied that they would be thrown away because they are duds. I did not know what that meant and she stated they had not life in them and she had no need of them. My heart was broken. What do you mean they are duds, no purpose, no need - that just could not be. I knew in my heart there was life - I could feel it. I went outside with tears welling up in my eyes. Just then I saw her pick up the eggs and put them in the trash can. She left the room for lunch period and something came over me. I am always the GOOD girl, the one who follows rules but before I even knew what I was doing I ran into the classroom and looked inside the can. Two had broken but one was still in perfect condition. I took off my strawberry red sweater, snatched up the egg and wrapped it around the fragile egg. I dashed out of the classroom and grabbed my lunchbox. I put the sweater encased egg into my box and hide them in the cloak room.
All afternoon I worried that someone would find out what I had done and I would be at the principles office before I could blink. The school bell rang for end of day and I ran to grab my stolen object. As I walked home holding the box so carefully I talked softly to the little being inside. I was not sure how my parents would respond - I once again was bring home a problem - I managed to be the magnet for strays, hurt or near death things. I could not help it... Before my Mother could even ask how my day was I blurted out the whole sorted story. With tears in my eyes and rolling down my cheeks my Mother said well we better go to the library and figure out how to hatch this little one. We kept it in the lunch box and off to the library we went. A book would solve all.
We came home and with the help of my Father who also could not resist my love for all things in need helped in the creation of a nice homemade incubator in the living room. I begged my parents to let me sleep next to it and again after much tears they agreed. By next morning NOTHING. My sisters teased me at the breakfast table on what a dope I was to believe it would hatch. Why if it did not hatch at school would I think it would hatch here? I kept saying "You'll see, there is a chick in there it is just a bit slow".... Over and Over I kept saying "BUT I KNOW, I Heard it tell me so"... O.K. another reason why I get those looks.
Two more days went by and now my parents were worried. I heard my Father say "This is silly - there is no chick in there" My Mother understood that I needed time to come to that myself. Just when I was starting to worry a bit myself I decided what it needed was me. So when everyone went to bed I picked up the egg and sat with it in my hands through the night - staying wide awake and talking softly to it. In the middle of the early morning a crack appeared. I thought OH MY GOSH did I squeeze it too hard. Just then it rocked a bit in my hands and then a small piece of shell fell off. I was so excited but did not make a sound. I watched and the crack got bigger and tiny little sounds could be heard. Do I dare? I picked a little piece of the shell off and I could see a yellow swatch of it's beak. Before I knew it I pulled the shell off and there in my hand was this wet and tiny little chick. I quickly put it under the warmth of the light and ran to get my Father. I did not share I was part of the birth for fear I might have a long lecture of NOT TOUCHING. He sat with me just watching the sweet little creature. He then said to me "Great Job Grace - this little one owes you it's life" I felt so proud and at the same time so overwhelmed. Oh My Gosh I am responsible for this tiny little creature....
Day after day, week after week, month after month I saw to the daily care of my new best friend. EGGIE was his name and he followed me like a dog and spoke to me and no one else. He sat on a chair next to me at the table and ate his goodies out of my camping bowl. My mother made me in charge of any droppings but Eggie was so good about waiting most time till we went outside. He was not allowed to sleep in our bed but my Father made a little enclosure next to my bed for him. My middle sister was not happy with having a chicken in the bedroom but my Father (the Law maker) told her it was going to be.
I had Eggie for almost a year until my neighbors horrid dog got loose and came to our house and attacked him. He did not survive and I ran to get my Fathers hunting rifle to shot the dog. I could hardly carry that rifle but I was going to take this dog off the planet because this was not the first time nor would it be the last thing that this dog would kill something that I loved. My Father grabbed the rifle from me and said that this is not the way to handle this loss. We dug a grave, my Mother made a coffin, we had a service and I then spent the night laying with EEgie in the dark. My father brought me the sleeping bag, flashlight and my Teddy as I stayed the night to make sure of his peaceful passing.
I shed buckets of tears for the loss of my Eggie but as my Father said "Soon all the wonderful times you spent with him will over shadow the sadness". So every time I see an egg I have a flash of my Eggie. I also remember that tiny little voice that called to me when all others only saw a dud. That small spark has been the fire that has burned in me all these years.
Do you remember your small spark?? I would love to hear - was it the first box of watercolors, or the first chapter book you finished or maybe is was the first song you danced to??
Would love to know what it was that has kept you on your path?