It Feels So Good When I Stop
I've been worried about this beautiful male Cardinal for a couple of days now. He was absolutely obsessed with that other Cardinal in the mirror. I could see him from my window, out in the open carport, sucked in by his image in a very large mirror stored there. That other Cardinal is obviously in his territory to make trouble, to steal his girl, his food, his honor, his prime nesting spot. He must be vanquished. But the blighter is persistent! No matter how many times our Cardinal comes at him, squawks, gives it his best Cardinal Ninja feather flurry beating, the other guy is still there. For days this has gone on: "I'll wait in the nearby Hackberry tree. Choose my moment and... swoop in for the surprise attack! Aaack! He's already there waiting for me with a very nice Ninja feather flurry himself! Aaaaack! Sit on the cardboard and give him the evil eye. Turn and give him the other evil eye. Blast! He's just as intense about this as I am. Back to the tree to come up with another strategy...."
Makes me wonder. What lesson is in this for me? What am I battling in my own life that reveals a myopic, self-centered mini-drama? How much are the obstacles thwarting my progress.... me?
Finally today, I couldn't stand it anymore. I was worried that pretty redbird would hurt himself. I went out and threw a piece of black plastic over the mirror. This confused our friend. He stayed up in the tree a while, taunting his nemesis. He made several swooping passes by the covered mirror and then circled back up to the tree. After several hours, he finally decided the war was over and he had won. He could move on with his life.
I thank God that I have deep friendships with people who, when they see areas in my life where I am locked in mortal combat against myself, in the idolatry of self criticism or perfectionism or judgement - they do me the honor of helping me take my eyes off myself and refocus on the really important things around me. And regain my freedom.