April has been a bad, bad month for me, but I wanted to tell you about it because something awesome came out of it, too. So you know, I have a condition that sometimes causes me a lot of pain and makes it difficult to function. I recently went off the medication I take for it because of some unpleasant side effects, which was a bad idea, I guess. I was in almost constant pain, lethargic, not eating, not accomplishing anything, just wanting everything to stop. Then someone shot a pigeon in my yard.
I hate watching things die. I mean I really hate it. Once a creature is dead, I'm sad, but I'll deal with it. Life is life, and it always ends in death. But watching something suffer and doing nothing, even if it's only an insect, is a special kind of hell to me. So I cancelled all my appointments, caught the bird with the help of a kind neighbor, and started frantically phoning emergency vet clinics.
"It's a pigeon," they said. "No one will do anything for it." I told them I would pay. Didn't they have to do something if I paid? I mean what if I just happened to have a pigeon for a pet? Didn't they have to treat it then? I didn't even care whether I could afford it at the time. Someone had to do something. The poor bird couldn't use it's legs. It was bleeding and blinking up at me with gold-and-amber, sunset eyes. But it was a pigeon, so the answer was no. Never mind that pigeons are actually doves we brought here in the first place. Never mind the carrier pigeons that saved hundreds of lives in wars past
. Pigeons are worthless.
One vet finally gave me the number of a place that would help, and my husband and I drove an hour to get the bird to someone who could treat it. It was just a person, operating out of her house. But oh, the operation she has! There are birds of all varieties there, owls and hawks, falcons and doves. She has parrots that have been lost or abandoned, a raven (an unbelievably beautiful bird), an emu named Kevin, and a Vulture named Voldemort. She even has orphaned rabbits. She rehabilitates and releases those creatures she can, and those that can never go back into the wild (like the vulture, raven, and hawk) she trains to be educational birds.
So I volunteeredbecause what else was a super-depressed, feeling-useless-and-in-pain girl to do? And even though I could barely stand at the time, it was awesome. I hand fed a baby owl, pigeons, and finches. I got to cuddle with Cockatoos and pet a young hawk. I've even helped to bathe orphaned ducklings. Honestly, it's been wonderful, and I keep going back because it makes me feel good to do what I can for the creatures I loved as a child.
April? Not a total loss.
Also, in case you were curious, the pigeon survived.