Do you ever feel like you’re right in the middle of something… all the time? Between letting go and hanging on? Between giving up and trying harder? Between wanting something and wanting nothing?
Lately I feel so “in between.” It’s the best way I can describe it. I’m in love with my house, but browse Trulia weekly lusting over other homes. I want to live in the country and have land, but also love my short trips to Target, to work, and having close neighbors. I want to dream big and do great things, but I also find immense contentment in my every day, boring happenings. I’m so… IN BETWEEN.
Today we lost one of our chickens, Edith, to a hawk. I heard a strange sound coming from the chickens’ area of our yard and went to see what it was. I turned the corner and saw that my sweet little hen had become the prey to a hungry predator. The hawk was on her when I looked and flew away when I screamed. It was awful. And sad. And sad. And sad. When my husband arrived and swiftly started to take care of the situation, I ran for the house, eyes gushing and heart pounding. I had let them out of their coop this morning. I had felt bad for them being enclosed and wanted to give them a happy day of eating grass and roaming free. I had allowed this situation to happen.
After a phone call with my dad (I’m sure I was barely audible I was bawling so hard) and reassurance from my husband, I realized that it wasn’t my fault. It was an incredibly unfortunate situation. There are no leaves on the trees, the chickens were vulnerable, and this hawk was needing a meal. (For the record, we have never seen hawks in our neighborhood in the two years that we’ve had chickens.) But I still felt guilt and sadness. I felt like a bad chicken mama. I remembered caring for our hens when they were little, tiny chickies. I remembered watching them grow. All six grew up healthy and hearty and have been giving us delicious eggs ever since.
Life is hard, you know? Days like today make me get that “in between” feeling. Should we continue keeping chickens or give that up? Do we need to get them an entirely new coop to live in or stay with the same one? Do I need to not get so bothered by this death or is it good to have these feelings when something you’ve cared for dies? SO in between.
I don’t have answers. Hopefully they’ll come to me some day, as an obvious and clear oh-that’s-what-i’ve-been-missing sign, but I’m guessing they won’t. For now, I’m thinking that maybe being “in between” is okay. Maybe it’s better than all or nothing because it allows for change and growth in life. Maybe being “in between” means that you’re constantly choosing rather than blindly walking through life. Maybe it means you’re asking yourself the hard questions and realizing all the possibilities around you.
And I think I’d rather live a life knowing the endless possibilities and choosing what I can, instead of taking for granted this time we have on earth. Edith’s death reminds me that there are endings, which we cannot plan for and cannot avoid, but there are also beginnings and choices that we can make.
Here’s to a 2017 full of “in between” feelings that lead to decisions that make us better appreciate our time here on earth. And here’s to remembering sweet Edith! I’ll miss your pecking and scratching, your tasty eggs, and your entertaining chicken self. I hope there’s a chicken farm in heaven for you.