Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Faith of a Child

We had a pet rat for over 2 years. His name was Thunder. He was a nice rat, very friendly and kind. I liked him well enough. I had fond memories of having pet rats from when I was a child, so I thought it would be a good pet for my children. Before we got Thunder, I posted about another rat we had bought that died shortly after from a respiratory infection. That was quite sad, so when we got Thunder and he started showing signs of the same thing, we took him in for their "no sickness" policy that says if your rat gets sick within the first 10 days, they'll pay the vet bill. He was in the "hospital" for a good few weeks before they declared him well and he came home. Once he had gone through that, he was fine. He did get a few yucky tumors on his back, but from what I've read, that's normal for rats. He'd just gnaw them off when they got annoying (yuck!), but they never seemed to be a problem. So last week I was cleaning around his cage and thinking of how yucky he had become...he was getting old and was no longer keeping his messes as contained as he had previously. I certainly didn't want to do anything to him or get rid of him, but I was kinda tired of him. A couple of days later I walked downstairs from putting Ryan to bed and my girls were all sad. "Thunder is dying" they told me. I'm amazed that they recognized the signs. Yes, he was moving less, but he was still responsive. Within 24 hours, he was gone. It showed me that they really did pay attention to him, even when it seemed like they didn't. It showed me that they truly have tender hearts for God's creation and I love that so much about my girls. I was awake before they were the morning he died. I got him out of the cage, put him in a box and cleaned the cage out before they were up. I didn't want them to see him dead. We had a little funeral--complete with harmonica music, hymns and a scripture reading. The girls made a cross for his grave and a stone that we printed his name on with a Sharpie marker. It was kinda sad, but I was glad he was gone...is that mean? I don't think it was mean. He lived a long rat's life. So in the past couple of days Savannah has been praying that Kyburz (our cat) would catch a bird for her. *sigh* I don't want any more critters to care for!!! She even took Thunder's cage and got it cleaned and prepped for a bird to inhabit it. So this morning as we said our morning prayer (just after I had put Kyburz outside), she prayed, "Please let Kyburz catch a bird for me". I kid you not, within 2 minutes I heard shouts and confusion...Savannah RAN outside...I ran after her. Kyburz did indeed have a bird. Not just any bird either...he had a big, fat PIGEON! Now, we don't really have pigeons around here. I saw one yesterday and remarked on how we NEVER see pigeons here. I don't know if this was the same one, or if they just happen to be migrating through here or what, but this was a bit weird. We finally got the bird from Kybruz clutches and put it in the (previously prepped) cage. Kyburz didn't hurt it, but he did a great job of quickly clipping it's primary flight feathers. So it looks like we have a pet bird...at least until it can fly again! At least it's a pretty interesting one. Life is NEVER dull in a house full of children!!

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