We open the screen door. It’s loud.
Lorikeets squawk and fly around us. Their bright colors cheer any foul mood. My 3-year-old is thrilled. He rushes to find the Butterfly World attendant stationed in the room. For $1, I purchase a small, plastic cup containing a pink-colored sugary substance. Lorikeet food.
I love watching his face light up when we feed them. Initially, he is giddy. Birds swoop down and land on his shoulders, head, and arms. He laughs loudly. And then, he calms. As the lorikeets take turns drinking up the concocted nectar, my little boy turns inquisitive. A gentle energy washes over him. He watches the birds. He admires them. He holds still to make space for their antics, eating, moving, and coming to and fro.
Tourists from Canada, Colombia, or New York may surround us. Sometimes the room can get pretty crowded. But everything stills in those gentle moments. Over the course of our visits to Butterfly World, I’ve captured a few photos. Yet, I so prefer to simply observe the magic. A calm wonder softens any worries in my heart or mind as I watch my young son marvel at the birds on his arms.
We spend our days like this. Exploring, learning, and connecting to ourselves, each other, and nature. I want him to connect to the animals, plants, and bugs that share our world. I want him to remember what little bird feet feel like upon skin. Such visceral memories matter. Before we learn to abstract the world, we are best served by learning to connect to it.
In her articles and personal blog posts, Amy reflects upon birth, death, motherhood, ethics, and religion/spirituality. She is a regular contributor to PhillyVoice and has blogged for Attachment Parenting International, The Birthing Site, Philly.com, and Holistic Parenting Magazine.
Author and educator Peggy O'Mara observes: "With her triple identity as yoga teacher, doula, and chaplain, Amy Wright Glenn brings a one-of-a-kind tenderness and empathy to her writing and she's not afraid to talk about the difficult parts of life."