I once read a fantasy series by Gayle Greeno about cats who communed with their ancestors by elevating their thoughts in a meditative spiral. At the time, I thought it was a bit weird and wondered why a spiral. Now, I totally understand, and often see a spiral of progress in my own life. It represents the concept that we encounter the same lesson or challenge in our lifetime several times. As we mature and grow in our awareness, we hopefully have a higher perspective, have worked learned what the situation has to offer, and can handle it better. Each upward spiral takes us past the same issues until we have mastered all its lessons. By a few encounters with an issue, we’ve conquered it and sail through with flying colors.
As a child, we may hit a specific lesson and not handle it well at all. Let’s say we experience rejection and we have a full-out emotional response with a temper tantrum, crying, screaming — the whole bit. When we’re older and someone rejects us, we have more experience and confidence; we handle it better. As an adult, we handle it better still. When we’ve mastered our reaction, we see rejection for what it is – a problem the other person is experiencing, or an incompatibility of two divine souls – rather than a defect in ourselves. As we mature in our self-awareness, we handle it differently.
I thought of this today, as I noticed my vision moving higher in all ways. Perhaps I’ve hit a new layer of the spiral. I’ve always been low to the ground and pretty grounded. I had little use for things in the air. I wasn’t interested in birds. I thought they
were unintelligent, noisy mess-makers,
if they registered at all. Then I started dreaming about parrots and felt that one was calling me. Soon thereafter, we adopted our first rescue parrots. We were then asked to take in two more parrots by our veterinarian, who was trying to keep birds in need out of the rescue organizations. They are generally one-person birds, and I wasn’t anyone’s first choice. That was pretty odd, because I’m the one that all the dogs and cats gravitate to. A couple of years later, and I’m the go-to person for all three birds. I take care of them, and they respond to me.
The alpha bird in our small flock has taken me on as his person, teaching me how affectionate they can be. He’s at least 35 years old and loves to cuddle. He likes me to pet and preen him when he’s mellow. When he’s feeling spunky, he likes to somersault down my chest or bob to oldies rock-n-roll.
Now, I notice birds everywhere, and wherever I go, I seem to be visited by hawks and eagles. Thanks to living on a major migration route, I’ve also enjoyed watching the many egrets, herons, pelicans, geese, cranes, and ducks that fly our way. My eyes are constantly up. I admit, I’m too nearsighted to be very interested in the small songbirds, and there aren’t many in my suburban neighborhood. It’s the large birds that call to me. So do the clouds, the stars, and the sky. My feet are still on the ground, but my spirit is lifting me up and my eyes follow. And somehow, there’s happiness in the air. I feel really good.
I think back to the year when my twins were two, I was a single mother of three, and life was a struggle. I gave all I had to the children, the job, and the vacuum cleaner; there was little energy to nurture myself. I woke every morning and cried, wondering when it would get easier. Thank goodness, those days are a distant memory, because it did get easier. I changed, grew up, and found my place in the world. Now, every day is a good day, even when “bad” things happen. I can handle it, and I’m not afraid any more. How life changes! I’m no longer watching my feet plod along. I’m soaring with the birds.