“Mommy, I’m bringing her with us.” Cradled in my daughter’s hands was a brown chick swaddled in her blue bandana. It rested securely against her chest as she clucked comforting words.
“Okay” I agreed.
We were returning some items to Costco and wouldn’t be there long. The chicken man had said the more we handle them the better.
At this juncture I couldn’t help but ponder the simple question – What makes an animal a pet? Here my daughter affectionately held a creature, who under most circumstances would grow up to be Sunday dinner, but here also she held something of her own gentleness, affection and yes, growing love. What a funny world this is where a person can love something, care for it and eventually grieve when it is gone, that same something the family feeds on several times a week
As I’ve said before, farm girl I’m not. But I do realize that there, in that crisp bandana lay a piece of my daughter’s heart, and because I love her, I’m in this funny conundrum of roasting chicken with garlic and rosemary for dinner, while loving and caring for this downy bird nestled in my child’s arms. It’s a sensitive thing – gentleness and compassion are being cultivated.
Oh the complexities of love and the human heart!