Friday, September 3, 2010

Have You Held a Hummingbird?

Last week, after school, my 7th grade daughter came running through the door. Completely out of breath, she said, "Mom, there's a hummingbird trapped in our garage!"

I thought her concern was precious, and as a parent, I was grateful I had raised her with compassion - that she could see the bird's need and wanted to help.

So, I went into the garage and sure enough, there was that poor little bird trying to escape through one of the windows. Because I knew I'd never be able to reach him on my own, I looked around for something to help me pursuade the little bird down and out the garage door. I grabbed a badmitten racket and very slowly and carefully brought the bird to a safe corner of the window. The poor thing was terrified. His little body trembled, but his wings were as still as could be. Have you ever seen a hummingbird not buzzing his wings? Me either. At least, not until that moment.

Once I had him positioned, I gently scooped him into my hand being careful not to hurt him. In that second, my thoughts immediately went to, "I'm holding a hummingbird!" How many people can say they've done that? The most amazing thing of all, however, was the noise he let out. The best description I could come up with for it was a cry. I had no idea that hummingbirds could even make a sound. My heart sank as I thought about how desperate he must have felt in those moments. So I quickly approached the garage door,opened my hand and off he flew, out into the beautiful world.

In your writing journey, do you ever feel like that hummingbird? Are you desperately looking for a way out of a closed window? Maybe you can even see your goal on the other side, but you can't get to it because there's a barrier holding you back.

Then the unbelievable happens. You get a request! Now you're filled with so much excitement that you literally tremble.

But then...the dreaded rejection arrives. The feeling of being so high has plumeted to the ultimate low of lows. And you're filled with self-dout.

You're trapped.

Maybe you feel vulnerable. Or scared. Or even a bit like crying.

You fight against the negative thoughts and struggle to make sense of it all.

But then you realize that you have support. It might be family and friends or critique partners or even an online community of writers. Those relationships give you just enough comfort that you can rebuild your confidence and move on in your journey.

So, during your ups and downs of the writing process, remember that we're all here for you. When you quiver with joy, we'll celebrate with you. When you shudder with disappointment we'll wrap you in words of encouragement.

When you're ready, we'll open our hands and let you soar. Because if you look behind you, there may very well be an open door just waiting for you to fly through it.

30 comments:

Kittie Howard said...

Amie, this is a beautiful post, very elegantly written. You pulled me into every action. I feared the little bird had traumatize itself and wouldn't be able to fly. And how you related all to writing, fabulous!!

Amie B said...

thanks kittie!

Amy Allgeyer Cook said...

Aw -- I love that thought. That friends are like a balm for rejection wounds. :) Thanks Amie.

T. Anne said...

Aww! What an experience and how sad that it let out a cry! We have them all over our front yard and they are fascinating to watch! I can't imagine holding one!

KarenG said...

Beautiful post! Great blog, your bio made me laugh :) Thanks for joining my party so I could find you!

Taffy said...

Nice! Really great post!

Angie Ledbetter said...

What a gorgeous blog. So calming and easy on the eyes. (Can ya tell mine isn't quite so? LOL)

So glad I stopped by here from the bbq. Am following on all your social networks and adding you to my Rockin' Blogs list. Will be back.

Nectar-drinking hummers to you!

Tamika: said...

Yay~ I'm your 100th follower! I'm popping over from the BBQ at Karen's:)

As a writer have certainly felt caged at times. My fears can be the biggest prison there is.

MT said...

Hummingbirds are beautiful, aren't they? You've made a nice analogy.

I hopped over from Musings of a Penniless Writer. I enjoy connecting with other writers.

Have a great weekend. :)

Amie B said...

amy - you are so right. my writing friends have been a balm countless times. i'd be lost without them.

t. anne - it was truly magical. i felt like i was holding a tiny miracle.

karen - thanks for hosting such a great BBQ. the food was great, but the company was even better!

taffy - thanks for finding me!

angie - loved your spicy cajun blog!

tamika - it's either irony or fate...but i'm your 200th follower!

mt - thanks so much. my grandmother collected hummingbirds (figurines, not the actual birds) so i kind of felt a piece of her that day. :)

Donna Hosie said...

What a beautiful story and a gorgeous looking blog.

Thanks for stopping by my party. I'm doing the rounds in killer heels - my feet are killing me but it is so worth it.

Fantastical Fantasy Blog Party

Danyelle said...

I love this story, Amie! That's awesome! I've never seen a humming bird who wasn't flapping their wings ninety miles an hour. :) And you're absolutely right about having a support system. They're what help get us through the trapped in the corner times.

catdownunder said...

Miaou! No I do not chase birds, especially not hummingbirds. We do not have them here but they are the most awesome and amazing things.
Purrowling in from the blog party - and glad I did!

Rachel Fenton said...

Hi Amie, thanks for stopping by, lovely to have found your blog - which looks fab. I've never seen a real life hummingbird so your post was fascinating!

Thanks - looking forward to coming back.

Talli Roland said...

What a great post, Amie. Thank you.

I'm over from Karen's blog party and wow! I LOVE the look of your blog! So pretty!

Terri Tiffany said...

What a lovely post! Yes, I have felt like that hummingbird this week as I look at the edits given back to me. I didn't feel like crying, I wanted to bawl!! And then I received such kind notes from some writer friends.

That helpes so much and put me back at it.

Nicole MacDonald said...

beautiful post, lovely metaphor :) And cool you held a hummingbird! I haven't even seen one in real life before :) I just popped over from the BBQ, nice to meet you!

http://damselinadirtydress.blogspot.com

Lisa Potts said...

So glad to "meet" you, Amy. When I read you loved chocolate I knew I had to stop over from the BBQ and say hi. Looking forward to following!

Jennifer Shirk said...

How cool! And what a beautiful post and how it relates to writing!

Thanks for visiting from Karen's BBQ!

PS. Your blog is SO pretty. I'm slightly jealous. :)

KO said...

amazing.

Amie B said...

donna - kick off your shoes and stay a while!

danyelle - hugs and writing cookies! ;)

cat - thanks for finding me! i'll be stopping by shortly!

rachel - *waves* welcome!

terri - crying, bawling, desperate pathetic sobs....yeah, that's me.

nicole - you've never seen a hummingbird? they are magic. the stuff stories are made of!

lisa- you just missed my contest! i was giving away triple chocolate fudge cookies! to die for.

jennifer - welcome!

katerine - you're amazing!

Talei said...

Hi Amie,

Great post! Hummingbirds are beautiful little creatures.

I'm visiting from Karens BBQ party too. And your blog is lovely-very pretty! ;)

Jen said...

What an adorable story and analogy. Hummingbirds are beautiful and amazing creatures. My grandmother loved them and every time I see one I think of her. Very special!

Yay for Karen's fantastic BBQ party, she had such a brilliant idea!

Shelley Sly said...

Beautiful post, Amie! I can't imagine holding a hummingbird, but I bet it was an incredible experience! I like the writing analogy you drew as well. Hope you've had a great weekend!

Jess said...

Came over here from Karen's BBQ--thanks for commenting on my blog--yours is GORGEOUS, and I love the hummingbird post :)

February Grace said...

What a beautiful description of a poignant, once in a lifetime moment and also of the position we so often find ourselves in as writers. Support from others who understand our ups and downs is truly a gift and only something other writers can give us. Thank you for this post.

I can't believe I wasn't already following your blog- don't know how that's possible but I remedied it now! Thanks for the Tweet, so happy to read such a lovely post.

~bru

Amie B said...

talei -welcome!

jen - our grandmothers had something in common. :)

thanks shelley!

jess - i have chrissy at caffeinated blog designs to thank. she does great work!

bru -yeah - that's weird. i thought you were a follower already, too.

Stephen Tremp said...

I have to say I have held a hummingbird. Caught one in my place and made it fly until it was too pooped to fly anymore. So I caught it and showed it to my kids, then set it free. It was a very cool event for all.

Stephen Tremp

Bethany Mattingly said...

*sigh* What a wonderful post. It must have been an amazing thing to behold.

Medeia Sharif said...

Poor bird. It would be nice to convey our intentions to frightened animals. But what a beautiful event to hold and release him/her.