Article: Chickadee Teachings

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My father-in-law, Bill, built a beautiful birdhouse that he put up in our fairy garden last year. This year, chickadees decided to raise their brood in there after scouting it out rigorously over the winter months. I wondered why they chose our garden and what meaning that might have for me at this point in my life. It turns out that chickadees are the truth-bringers; their medicine is to point out hidden truths that need to be spoken for the benefit of all.

I discovered that these tiny birds are capable of big energy and are persistent in their guardianship of the truths in life. When I started to prepare my garden in April, their chicks had already hatched; they were protective and watched me intently as I worked. I spoke to them to let them know I meant them no harm and that they could raise their babies in my garden without fear. They settled after that but they hedged their bets by making sure one parent was going out for food while the other stayed with the chicks. They stayed true to their instincts.

Two months of diligent feeding by the parents every five minutes or so led to the growth of five very healthy baby chickadees. I was stunned by the devotion and selflessness of the parenting I witnessed. I was working on a new writing project in my backyard when I felt someone looking at me. I looked up and my father-in-law and his wife were grinning at me. They rarely come into Calgary but they had a doctor’s appointment so they swung by on the off chance that I’d be home. I made tea and brought it out into the garden. I was thinking how great it was that they could come and enjoy the garden Bill had helped us create when I saw a little head peaking out of the birdhouse. This young chickadee was surveying the outside world for the first time, planning her next move. All of the sudden, her parent called to her from a tree branch and she flew on fresh wings to meet her.

After that, she could not get enough; she was flying all over the garden and calling out in joy. Her brothers and sisters followed her and they were all darting around like the youngsters they are with so much energy and life. We marveled at them all exploring the world with such glee. It was a cacophony of chickadee calls unlike the ones I’ve been used to hearing the last few months made by the two parents. It sounded like a chickadee family reunion in my back garden! Everything had come full circle.

Weeks ago, I had secretly prayed to Spirit to allow me to witness the babies’ first flight and I was so thrilled that my wish was granted. This reaffirmed that everything in life–all successes and even all failures–is co-created with Spirit for my learning.   I am in the process of birthing a lot of dreams and projects at the moment and it seemed like Spirit was saying to me: “See. You never gave up. You were patient like the chickadees. You tried new things. You kept on going through the challenges and now all your dreams are coming true. You can release them into the world joyfully.”