|I had hints, I had advice, I had cautions, but nobody told me how owning birds would completely take over my life.
Nobody told me I'd become a bird store junky, standing at the checkout counter in bliss until half way home and then wondering just how long it would be before the Visa came in or husband asked for the check book to balance the account.
Nobody told me my husband would say, "I think you ought to stay away from the bird store. You seem to have lost all control". Hmmmm ... Me? How did this happen?
Nobody told me when I saw a particular cage for $595.00 I might think wow that IS a good deal. Or when someone mentioned a $4,000.00 cage I could see the reason some people might need a cage like that.
Nobody told me that I would be up at 7:00am on Sunday morning peeling yams and apples to cook so they would be added into a corn meal and wheat cereal mash.
Nobody told me I wouldn't mind when feeding that mash to my bird that he would shake his head with that mixture flying in every direction, on to my carpet, on to my clothes, on to my face.
Nobody told me how much money I would spend on food, how much of it I would buy and just how little my birds would like any of it.
Nobody mentioned that once you own birds you need an extra freezer in the garage.
Nobody told me that I would spend an hour standing with my hand on a tree branch watching for hawks so my bird could hang out in the sun and chew new buds.
Nobody told me I would be on the computer at all hours talking and reading about birds.
Nobody told me I would make friends I will never see and that I would worry about them and theirs as if family.
Nobody told me I would check my son's bed for old or damaged stuffed animals to give to the bird like that stuffed cat. He never really liked it and it is missing a leg anyway.
Nobody told me I would do two extra loads of laundry a week with bird towels and sheets.
Nobody told me that every morning I would put a sheet over my covers, litter my bed with weird wooden things, stuffed animals, leather pieces, apple slices and peanuts.
Nobody told me just how much he would squawk.
Nobody told me I would come to hear differences in the tone and shrillness.
Nobody told me I not only could tell the difference but would learn when to respond, or that my husband would say, "it's okay, this is his good morning happy time, he will settle down."
Nobody could have known that my husband would say, "So he squawks. It is less and less; the kids will deal with it."
Nobody told me I could play with him like I do. That he would chase me and I would chase him. That he would be just as exuberant as a puppy.
Nobody told me my husband would rather snuggle with the bird in the morning than make his bagel.
Nobody told me my husband would make an extra half a bagel to share with the birds.
Nobody could have convinced me that this same husband would agree to shower with the birds in the bathroom (for the steam) and then without urging, could be heard to play peek-a-boo while drying off.
Nobody told me how much I would sing out loud.
Nobody could have guessed those songs would be golden oldies like You Are My Sunshine or songs from musicals.
Nobody told me how excited I would get to come home after 6 hrs. and see seed thrown all over the place. Yea! He ate while I was gone.
Nobody told me that I would not resent vacuuming twice a day to clean up the mess he made while eating alone.
Nobody told me how my heart would tighten when I got home today after being gone for six hours and took my squawking baby out.
Nobody told me how I would feel when sooo tired I put out a sheet on the floor, put toys all over, grabbed a pillow for me, lay down and my birdy only wanted to snuggle with me.
Nobody told me how it would feel to have a little bird body across your chest and neck, little head on your cheek. I was not told how soft his kisses would be or how warm his face was as he fell asleep on my cheek cooing softly.
Nobody told me how long I would lay there awake so he could sleep.
Everybody told me how much I would love him.
by Lori H. Zywiciel
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