Thursday of last week was quite the traumatic day, and I’m not just throwing that word around. It truly was traumatic. It was the day I almost killed a bird, and then saved it, all the while bawling my eyes out for literally hours and then falling asleep around 7:15pm.
But let’s start at the beginning.
It all started with our hornet and wasp problem out by our deck. I swear, we’re not meant to use our deck. First our brand new/replaced glass table top shattered in one of our TN spring storms, and then we were attacked by carpenter bees and hornets and wasps every single time we’d step out there. Our bug guy had just been out to the house to spray (not well, obviously) so instead of calling him back and shelling out more money, I figured I’d take matters into my own hands and do it myself. While I was at the hardware store, a nice guy working there referred me to this sticky wasp trap thing, like this one. He said it works really well and that I could hang it near where I thought the nest was, to use in addition to spraying. SOLD. I got home, hung it very low over the railing of our deck, and within a few hours it had already caught two wasps. Genius, I thought.
I’d let Oooj out back but he was afraid of a carpenter bee that was near the stairs so I picked him up and took him out into the yard. When he was ready to come back inside, I picked him back up and made my way back to the deck. AND I STOPPED DEAD IN MY TRACKS. There, on the sticky bug trap, was a sweet little chickadee bird – WRAPPED AROUND THE TRAP, STUCK. I think I was in shock for a few seconds because I just stood there. And then I walked into the house, called for Christian, and when he got to me in the kitchen, I just burst into tears. I begged him to take care of it (thinking the bird was already dead), while I bawled and apologized over and over for killing this bird. That’s when Christian walked back into the house and said,
“Em. It’s still alive.”
I lost it. Like, I was inconsolable. To think I’d not only caught this bird, but now it was suffering, dying a slow death on there – it was too much. I’ve always had a heart for animals – all of them – and watched my mom rescue and care for many wild animals when I was young. It was a huge part of my growing up. Christian called my mom and she reminded us to look online for a wildlife animal rescue & rehab place. We did, me still bawling, and found a place about 38 minutes from our house called Walden’s Puddle. Christian called and let them know we would be making the drive with this poor sweet bird, stuck on this bug trap.
Guys? LONGEST 38 MINUTE DRIVE OF MY LIFE. I gathered myself together enough to drive and Christian sat beside me, holding the bird – still stuck to the trap but alive, just blinking at him calmly – in a box. I couldn’t bare to look at it but I know I asked Christian about every 7 minutes if the bird was still alive. I prayed the whole way there that God would spare this bird, and was reminded that He cares for all living things, even the birds of the air. (Matthew 6:26)
We got to Walden’s Puddle – a beautiful facility way back in the woods, with a creek and flowers and wildlife all around. Christian walked the bird inside and eventually came back out to tell me they’d taken the bird to the back right away to work on freeing her. He said everyone in there was really nice and that of course there was no judgement. Truly, how would I have known a bird would fly into this trap? (She was most likely trying to get to the bugs on the trap for food.) They told him that because they have so many animals (they can have up to 300 at any given time!), they wouldn’t be calling us to give us an update – which I really did understand. I told Christian it was probably for the best because if she ended up dying, it would seriously tear me a part. Instead, I’d just pray that she lived and believe that she did. But not even five minutes later, Christian’s phone rang. It was Walden’s Puddle, telling us the bird was freed and alive, that they would keep her for a little while to monitor her but that she would be just fine. Glory to God, SERIOUSLY. I gave so much praise (I am still giving so much praise) – for God’s protection over this bird, for the people at Walden’s Puddle (and the fact that they did call us to let us know the good news), and that the bird was going to make it. I also thanked God for my amazing husband who stayed calm the entire time and continued to reassure me every 7 minutes that the bird was still alive and that it wasn’t my fault. We finally got home, walked through our front door, and it began to pour outside. Christian told me that the bird had been stuck on the trap upside down and she definitely would have drowned had she been still stuck on there in the rainstorm. God’s hand was on this entire situation. SO grateful.
I’m sharing this story with you all for two reasons: 1. to share just one more example of God’s faithfulness and love and care for us and His creations, and 2. to warn you about these sticky traps. DO NOT USE THEM. The marketing on the box may tell you it’s geared towards one thing but it traps (and gives a slow death) to anything that touches it.
I’ll be sharing more about Walden’s Puddle in the near future and how we can help them, whether you live in TN or not.