Dana Thiessen had no agenda beyond saving a little bird’s life. She had no idea of knowing that a tiny bundle of grey fluff would grow up to help save her own life.
When she found the tiny bird at the foot of one of her trees, she wasn’t sure what to do.She had heard a lot of old wives tales about how to deal with abandoned bird babies.
But, she wasn’t sure of the facts. So, she called someone who would know. She contacted a local wildlife biologist.
They told her to put the bird back in the nest if she could find it. If she couldn’t, put it in a safe place near the nest so the parents could care for it.
So, Dana put it in a secure nook in the tree and checked on it regularly. When the bird started getting weaker, and she hadn’t seen the mom feeding it, Dana knew it was time to step in.
She “took the baby under her wing” since its mother had apparently abandoned it. She put the baby, who she began to call Gracie, on her screened-in back porch so it could stay in touch with nature.
She knew that eventually it would have to be returned back to the wild.
She fed it the suggested foods until the baby was strong enough to forage. Then she placed berries, seeds, and bugs for the baby to find.
Before too long the baby was fully-fledged and was ready to be exposed back to nature. At first, he didn’t want to leave his mama, Dana.
Then, because blue jays are naturally curious, he flew away. He didn’t stay gone forever though, he came back by every day to say hello.
During the time that Gracie was learning how to be a big bird on his own, Dana was facing her own challenge. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
She required extensive surgeries as well as chemo and radiation. Each of which left her a little bit more weak and tired.
The one bright spot in her life was the flash of blue in the woods that told her that Gracie was coming for a visit.
As Dana grew weaker, Gracie’s visits started lasting longer and longer.
Having Gracie there to remind her that once he was tiny and weak and didn’t have much chance of survival but now was big and strong gave Dana the strength she needed to keep up the fight.
Her fight continues, but we are sure that Gracie will be there beside her all the way. They may never be able to actually fly together, but their souls fly in tandem every time he comes to visit.
Long may that connection continue!