THE CARE AND FEEDING OF THE DOVE
By Jamie Charter, M.S., CPDM
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is what are you doing for others?”
(Martin Luther King Jr.)
On September 13, 2001, after responding to an ad from our local native animal rescue group, I became the tender of some mourning doves. The newspaper article had spoken of the positive sign of these doves, found on September 11, after having been
recklessly released from an aviary by someone who no longer wanted them. The article was recruiting anyone with an aviary and birdseed to care for them, as they were unable to fend for themselves, as they were domesticated. Having both, I called, drove over and picked up these gentle small beings releasing them in the small aviary. I then started acquainting myself with their habits and needs, with help from the local feed store and a How to book.
That was the start of it. Several years ago, while reading the paper, I saw an ad for a free aviary. While the owner of this aviary had a great response to her ad, after hearing about the rescue story, she decided to donate the aviary to me.
For years, two birds lived in the aviary, two females as the case turned out to be.
Then, someone from the rescue group asked that I take on more birds……….including .a pigeon that had been hit by a car now named Emmett and more doves.
The population grew.
A year ago, I found a small bird up in the Sierras. After watching the site overnight, I concluded the bird was vulnerable and therefore, rescued it.
I hand fed this bird, not sure, what it was and after weeks, it blossomed into a wood pigeon, the same type as Emmett.
Through the years, the aviary population then grew to eight.
Three weeks ago, I noticed two broken eggs near a nest on a ledge. I then noticed a wiggly leg, from under the birds.
With joy, I realized that after 5 years of caring for doves, a pair had finally hatched some eggs.
Two beautiful white doves ventured off the nest and it was shortly thereafter I noticed one of the birds was rejected by the parent birds and the others in the aviary.
I then embarked on a mission, trying to heal this bird. I bought a small dropper and ground up food to mimic the crop milk the parent birds feed their offspring. The bird continues to be very responsive and his only friend is Emmett, the pigeon who will never fly again.
In watching the scene in the aviary, it reminded me of society and workplace issues.
The person who is different in the workplace, either by virtue of personality, race, disability, national origin, customs, etc.
The numerous stories on workplace discrimination, with lawsuits filed by those who have been discriminated against are all around us.
What attempts or efforts were made by those in the workplace, managers, supervisors, to look for commonalities, instead of differences?
Did anyone reach out to the person who is perceived as different, to promote inclusion, rather than exclusion?
Compassion for others is something we can all practice everyday, in every situation.
Life has become so fast paced………with multiple demands of work, family, friends, and commitments. So many priorities to accomplish, little time for reflection.
Just think of the power of our outreach, having the potential to lend some support as we proceed on our life journey.
After facilitating a presentation on workplace communication, and over lunch, the manager asked me why anyone would bother rescuing a pigeon.
The reply was that it was a unique being, deserving of the chance to flourish.
We are the wounded helping the wounded.
Positive action resounds throughout the world.
We start to heal………all of the dark spaces, corners and places that are housed within, from the circumstances of life that bring us together.
Somewhere, someone else in the world was rescued.
Compassion… good for the spirit, the heart, the soul.
Remember the dove.
Author, consultant and educator Jamie Charter has been providing employment and litigation consulting services for 22 years through Charter and Company employer resource consultants. Jamie is Certified as a Professional in Disability Management, (CPDM) and is a State of California Independent Vocational Evaluator (IVE). She is on the faculty of HRRESOURCE.COM.
Jamie Charter, consultant, trainer and author, has been providing employment and litigation consulting services for 23 years through Charter and Company employment resource consultants in Soquel, California. Areas of specialization include development and implementation of disability management programs, case management, EEOC/FEHA/ADA consultation, return-to-work facilitation, CalPers job description services, job analyses, conducting training seminars for employer groups on sexual harassment prevention and discrimination and litigation /expert witness services in Forensics.