Because, They Asked Me To.

Written By: B.D. Butler - Apr• 22•13

A song written by Patti Griffin and performed live by Kelly Clarkson & Reba McEntire

dexterI am a firm and solid believer in people having their callings in life. Granted it may take you awhile to get there, but I think people are innately good at something. I have been writing since I learned my alphabet and would enlighten my family with the tales that I had written. I took a hiatus when I felt as though I had to please the world that surrounded me, instead of doing what I really wanted. Eventually I began to figure out it’s about your life and your dreams, not the ideals of other’s that is the most important. It’s a rough row to hoe sometimes, but eventually you can find a clearing when you travel the road less traveled.

I feel that I got my calling to get involved in the avian community when I picked up that first Bird Talk. That was 25 years ago. Since then I have been drawn to birds and their intelligence for as long as I can remember. Watching them calculate how to get from point A to B, seeing them solve the puzzles that entertain them. Listening to them speak full sentences, or ask for a grape when they really want a grape. It’s just captivating.

Parrots w kidsSome of my closest friends don’t really get what I do, they don’t get why I am so enamored by birds, because to them, society has deemed them “just a bird”. I have seen bird owners in the past value birds as a decorative item, or a piece of the artsy decor. However at the smallest level when these same people were children, and their parents didn’t convey a respect for the lives of animals in them, sadly it simply carried over. Because, after all, aren’t birds just like goldfish. A dime a dozen and not very smart? That could be nothing further from the reality that exists in the world of birds. However it essentially comes down to the views that we instill in the next generation. The very kids of today that you raise to respect the lives of animals, may be the very care givers for your birds when you are gone. It’s sad, tear jerking, but true.

I like to take stock in my life and reflect if you will. I see colleagues busting their humps to make a difference. They throw their hat in the ring, help promote health and nutrition, spend every penny to help rescues, raise thousands of dollars and want nothing more than to help birds and they end up getting chastised. They want to help change the world of aviculture, so that the knowledge they have, will indeed carry over to the next generation of bird owners.

I got education here.

I got education here.

I see how avian education and networking is so important. Look at the Roaming Parrot, and their crusade to join rescues together into one network that would enable placement of parrots into the proper adoption or sanctuaries. That’s what I call a “calling”.

How about the people who have turned their homes into rescues. Losing out on their own space and free-time, simply because they want to save that plucked bird from the bird flipper that is currently advertising it on craigslist for over one-thousand dollars. Trust me, when it comes to the daily activities in a well-organized rescue, there is no “ego” when you are scraping dried strawberry off your wall, or walking around with poop in your hair. It’s a thankless job, but it’s just something you have to do.

I wrote an article a while ago about a horse trainer who immediately impressed me with his calm demeanor and simple, no-nonsense approach to animal training. One of my favorite quotes from him is “The horse is a mirror and sometimes you might not like what you see in that mirror”. So simply stated, a parrots behavior can simply be a reflection of the energy you are bringing into their space. That is also a reason why I love my birds so much, because they help me reflect. Reflect what I am feeling, by showing me that mirror and helping me learn more about myself. Learning that silence doesn’t have to be deafening, learning that I don’t have to be the best writer or blogger, animal trainer, singer, or marketing genius, but just the best version of me.

dex.coopI know that being active in the avian community is part of my calling in life, it fulfills my yearning to make a difference for these animals, to help and to educate. I am so glad that I got the chance to meet my greys and look into their eyes, because really what it comes down to…. it’s

because they asked me to.

 

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