Confessions Of A Persian Mom: Bird Food For Thought

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Great Neck resident Stanley Lipper captured a picture of this hungry blue jay in his backyard. (Photo by Stanley Lipper)

So, I have taken it upon myself to feed the birds daily. Why? Maybe it’s my innate need as a Persian mother to constantly feed someone or something. Or, maybe, it’s my way of dealing with my emptying nest, now that my kids are 11 and 6.

Regardless, it has actually been extremely rewarding, as the birds make for pretty good customers. They eat everything I give them with very little tarof, or persuasion, necessary.

It’s also amazing to see such beautiful creatures, right in my backyard. The red birds with a crown are my favorite, but I promise not to display favoritism.

Google Dearest has identified these beauties as Northern Cardinals and Red-naped Sapsuckers, for those of you who like technicalities as much I do.

The stores sell bird feeders, where you don’t actually have to do anything. Personally, I am not humble enough to just get one of those and let them be. I like to be more involved. Frankly, the same is true of my parenting style.

It is fascinating to see these creatures appear out of nowhere, even in the dead of winter, despite the snow. The delicate beings are quite averse to getting their wings wet, but they know when to come out, using their amazing instincts. It’s really miraculous that such a fragile creature can survive in the outdoors during frigid conditions. It makes me wonder what would become of them if I went away for a week.

I guess that’s the part of this that I crave—being desperately needed. I guess that’s not so relatable to mothers with small children. Surely, they would like to be needed less, particularly in the middle of the night.

The truth is, though, that these birds don’t depend on me. They have survived for thousands of years, if not more.

Still, it is a boost to my ego to have them come and eat. It’s funny, when I pass by the window they all fly away. I laugh and open the door to throw more bird food.

When will they learn to trust me? Don’t they know that it was me who put it out there and that I don’t want to hurt them?

In a very small way, it can be seen as a metaphor for the forces of the universe. It’s possible that when the Creator sees us worrying and frightened, He wonders when we will recognize that everything comes from Him. When will we realize that everything will be OK and there is a master plan that we can trust?

After all, time after time, we go through different hardships but we are still standing here today. Somehow, things worked out in the end, and not necessarily through our own toil. The process has been heartening for me. It has helped me see that each creature possesses its own beauty, strength and endurance.

Obviously, I purchased the 27-pound bag of wild bird food, as it was clearly a much better bargain than the normal-size bag. So, if anyone cares to join me in my new hobby,
I have plenty of bird food to share.

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