There are some things that baby chicks are designed to do from the moment they hatch. One of those is learning to perch up high, as high as possible.
It didn’t take me long to realize this. They would stand on their food bowl simply to be a little higher than they were before. Tipping it over didn’t bother them. They just stood on the overturned bowl.
So I set up bricks around their brooder, first for a small “jump and flap” to get up, then for a bigger “jump and flap,” and after that there was nothing too high they wouldn’t try.
I learned not all chicks develop their skills and reach their goals at the same time. For some, it seemed to come more naturally. For others, they needed to study how others accomplished this marvelous feat. Getting up to a spot way up high, higher than the top of your head…well, that can seem like quite a task to achieve!
The Brahma chicks were by far the most naturally gifted. They already looked like tiny eagles, particularly with the extra feathers on their feet. They mastered the bricks in no time and then set their sights on the top of the water bottle.
Nevertheless, they all had the goal of reaching the highest place possible. Some of those who were slower to catch on would study what the others did. Everyone would “peep” and “cheep” about their own accomplishments and those of their friends. It was often joyfully noisy, until everyone exhausted themselves and needed to take a nap all at the same time.
There was never any competition to get to the top of the bricks, no matter how I stacked them. But the water bottle was different. There was only one of those, and it was THE place to be!
Gracie never made it to the top of the water bottle, but I just know she was thrilled when Bessie made it up there for the first time and every time afterwards. Maybe when you love someone you feel like you’re right up there with them too.
My Life With Gracie showed me we can still applaud the successes of others and be patient with ourselves.
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