It started as an annoyance. I could hear my husband’s voice from the living room and kitchen, punctuated by the dog’s agitated barks. But it was still fifteen minutes until my alarm would go off, so I pulled the covers over my head and squeezed my eyes shut.
When I finally made it out of bed, I got the explanation.
“There were two birds in the house,” my husband said. “We got one of them out, but I don’t know where the other one went.”
I noticed the broom in the corner. Apparently his choice of apparatus for bird chasing. I padded into the kitchen to make coffee. (In case you hadn’t noticed, I don’t talk much in the mornings.) Then he let the bomb drop.
“I think it might have fallen behind the cabinets in the kitchen.”
Now, not only am I mute in the mornings, I also have a hard time getting my brain to perform any function, so while I heard the words, they really didn’t register much. Until it was time for him to leave. For New Orleans.
Standing in the kitchen I heard the flapping of wings, a sound not uncommon to my ears from my usual chair near the fireplace. Birds tend to congregate on our roof near the chimney. But this was in my kitchen. Behind a cabinet.
“What are we going to do?” I asked my husband as he rolled his suitcase toward the door.
“I don’t know.” He left to catch his flight. The bird flapped again.
Now I’m not a huge animal lover by any stretch of the imagination. I’m all for nature taking its course. But when you are standing there listening to a panicked bird try to rise up a small, tall space and can’t, and you know if you don’t do something the flapping will eventually stop and the thing will die, well, it’s kind of creepy. It seems cruel. And yet, did I really want to spend a bunch of money and ruin my beautiful cabinetry for a bird that some cat could snatch from a branch tomorrow?
I called my dad, who didn’t want to tear up my cabinets, either. Then I emailed a friend in construction. And I waited. I kept thinking if the flapping stopped, then there was nothing else I could do. It would be awful, but I’d be in the clear. But when my friend finally called about 6:30 that evening that bird still hadn’t given up trying to escape.
Our friend arrived with a drill-type tool that cut a perfect circle from the back of my cabinet. Then he stuck his hand in and pulled out a bird with a tiny body (smaller than my fist) and long wings (probably six inches). He set the bird in the yard. In a moment, it was gone, just a streak of brown over the neighbor’s roof.
I don’t think I could have gone to sleep that night knowing that bird was still in there, fighting for its life. I would have felt like a murderer. And I’m so glad I didn’t have to figure out what to do with an injured bird hobbling around on my lawn. Thankfully, the Lord watches over even the sparrows. It’s obvious He had his eye on this one the whole time.