Welcome Fellow Traveler!

Each of us is on a journey through mortality, and our mission is to find peace within ourselves and within the people around us, in our immediate families and circles to the community as a whole.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Broken Bird

After spending Christmas with my family in Arizona, I rushed back to Salt Lake City to pack, clean, and move on New Year's Eve.

I attempted to pack up as much as I could before my holiday. However, I soon discovered I was woefully under prepared. In my mind, it seemed like I didn't have that much stuff - until I started to try to pack it all.  Time was running out - I had a party to go to that night.  I started haphazardly throwing  into a tote bag, without much regard or care to wrap up delicate items.

When I started unpacking, I went through my Snoopy tote bag that had odds and ends in it. My hand reached into the blue bag. I pulled out one of my few Peruvian decor items I kept for myself - a small, black ceramic bird. On the bird's back, the artisan has spelled out Peru from the base of the bird's neck to the beginning of the bird's tail. It was the only one I'd seen in my travels that looked like that.

As I pulled out the little bird, I was immediately shocked and crushed to discover that my little bird had broken apart in my frenetic, push and shove move that I had just finished. As I held the two pieces in my hands, I felt very upset that my carelessness had cost my bird its tail.

If only I had taken time to properly care for it, protect it, wrap it up in something soft, or been more careful with my tote bag,  the bird wouldn't have broken. If I really valued and cared for the little bird, I would have taken better care of it. Yet, in the stress of moving,  I lost oversight on caring for the little things, and now I had a little broken bird that I couldn't replace. 

When I had some time, I sat down in my hand-me down office chair, and commenced operation to reattach the bird's tail to its body. At first, I thought it would be fast and easy. However, the first attempt failed. The glue wouldn't hold the ceramic pieces together because of the way it had broken.  Over and over, I added more glue. Yet, it still wouldn't hold. As soon as I moved the bird, the tail would just fall off again.  I had hoped that I would be able to repair the bird without any trace of breakage or cracks, yet it wasn't working.

Finally, I realized I needed to not just add glue, but I needed to hold the pieces together while I applied pressure to the pieces to make a bond. I also discovered I needed to fill in the cracks with glue over the length of the crack, around the whole circumference of the two pieces to fill in the gaps between the two sides. I was careful to apply just enough glue, to try to minimize scaring and surface signs of repair.

After a few times applying pressure, and filling in the cracks, I finally had success. My little broken bird is now in one piece again. I've repaired it; however, the cracks still show. There are extra spots of glue that diminish that once black sheen of paint. My repair work looks rougher than I had hoped. The tell-tale signs of repair work, and scars will always remain.

However, my little broken bird is no longer broken. It has been made whole again. It has been repaired. It is in one piece. It has been rescued from a trash can fate. There wasn't a quick fix like I hoped at the beginning. It took time, pressure, and effort, but my little bird is resting in a nice spot on my desk with its tail intact.

I sat at my folding table desk, and looked at my little once-broken bird.  I gingerly picked it up and examined it, and my repair work.  Suddenly, a pulsating electric thought raced through my mind and body. I realized why my little once broken bird is so special. It reminds me of myself.

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