When we picked out our little chicks we gave each of them names and then as they grew up, they each were given personalities. Inky was by far the kindest and smartest, so patient to be squeezed just a little too tight by a two year old. Bonnie and Dottie are the little old ladies of the group, the conversations I envision are quite caddy. Diva(n) is nervous and the biggest, a stick to herself kind of gal who likes to preen. Laughingly their names match their ridiculous made-up personalities.
|Everybody loves a baby chick|
|SH3's favorite place to be|
Red was placed in solitary confinement, a fate not fair to a social animal and so after countless hours of reading on the futility of chicken rehabilitation, the decision was sadly made to dispose of Red. Her death was quick and painless and not viewed by any SHs. Red was dead. I was nervous about what I would find when I got home from work. Were the SHs going to be okay with this news? Would I be expected to eat it? I sure hope he doesn't expect me to eat it!
I was mainly worried how my sweet SH2, by far the most introverted and introspective of her sibling crew, would take the news. BH1's education on the circle of life and expectations of being a member of our family clearly shone through when she calmly explained to me, "She was a mean chicken; Daddy said he had to kill her to stop hurting the other chickens." Not hurting others. She was right. We don't hurt others. A lesson that weighs heavily on this tender hearted SH2. I wonder if she thought the punishment fit the crime.
|SH2 holding her favorite Inky|
We don't hurt living beings, but I couldn't help but be slightly troubled by the double standard we had created. Red lost his life because he hurt the other chickens, the Great Dane did not. You could say the dog was doing what was instinctual, but then again so was the chicken--he lived in the same home and had the same upbringing as the other four, no one made him a bad bird, he simply was. How do you resolve this when the "natural order" of things breaks down? Thankfully the kids didn't ask me any of those questions. In the Bible, Solomon asked for wisdom above all things and his words weighed on my heart,
Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people? I Kings 3:9
We still have four chickens, three small humans and two dogs. SH2 came over to me with a serious look on her face and told me, "Mom, I am not eating those chickens." I sighed and scooped her up to whisper in her ear, "Me neither, baby, me neither."
Please God give me a mind to govern this your great people.