I Still Believe in Miracles
(Santa Rosa Beach, Fl.)
Blue Front Amazon lost and found in Florida
I Still Believe in Miracles
On June 28th back in 2003 my world fell apart when the love of my life, took flight into the wild blue yonder.
Plato was only a two year old Blue Fronted Amazon parrot. His personality brims over being full of himself, hilariously funny and with a heart too big to fit in his small body. Brilliant with a huge vocabulary, it was he, who flew down and landed upon my chest earlier that year, when I was so sick with pneumonia and asked me quite seriously “are you alright?” And it is he who sings “God is good” to the top of his lungs, in the shower with me, does the “high 4” (parrots only have 4 toes) and exercises as he says “stretch and bend.” He’s my green feathered buddy alright. Now he was gone.
Let me back up just a little bit and tell you how this happened. Plato had his wings clipped and I used to put him on my finger and we’d walk in the yard together. I’d point to all the different colored flowers and say “flower” and he’d say questioningly “flower?” We’d look at the butterflies together and watch the hummingbirds humming around. He was so young; everything was so new and beautiful to him. Then not too long after a trip to the vet and having his wings clipped, the vet told me he wouldn’t be able to fly, but glide to the floor.
I soon discovered that he could still fly and fly he did throughout the whole house landing on my shoulder wherever I would go. After I got him home and we were walking in the yard. I always had one of my fingers encased firmly over two of his toes, just in case he would get excited and fall.
That day, he bit my finger for only a reason that a parrot knows and letting pressure up from his toes, I yelled out a big “ouch.” With that response, he took flight and landed upside down in a gangly tree around the other side of the house. I opened the house door and quickly told my husband that Plato had gotten away and raced around the other side to get him.
I just wasn’t quick enough. He was pitifully hanging there on a gangly branch; upside down looking at me, almost waiting for me to rescue him, but I couldn’t go fast enough to get the ladder and climb up to where he was.
Then, in one quick swoop he flew high up into one of our pine trees. My heart sank. I started to try to woo him with his favorite foods and talk to him as softly as I could. It was all in vain. He had this new found freedom that he didn’t know what to do with it.
I knew one of the most important things to do when your bird gets away is to keep your eyes on him so you will know where he is. Makes sense, right? This doesn’t always work when they take to the sky though.
In the beginning, he stayed close to the woods that are near our home. He lived in tree tops and I would be able to talk to him everyday. Then, one day I climbed a 25ft ladder while he looked puzzled at me and enjoying his noon day shower from the torrent of rain high perching in that Magnolia tree.
With soaked clothes I managed to climb to the top of the ladder, and found I only had about a yard to go, but fear and age just would not allow me to let go and climb up upon the tree branches. Perhaps if I were about 30 years younger I told myself, I would then, spring right up there!
In the meantime, my husband rigged up a pvc pipe with a homemade perch on the end of it and handed it to me. Ingenious, I thought! I slowly moved the perch closer to where Plato was, when he cocked his head looking at this new and strange object. Fear won that test and away he flew onto another high place. Oh, the exasperation and frustration! I tried not to worry about him.
This was a serious thing for me. My bird was flying fearfully. He had this inbred instinct knowing he was a prey bird, so he never stayed long in any place.
I roamed the neighborhood calling for him and talking to people I’d never met before. Next, I put flyers all over our neighborhood, on trees, on fences and on poles. There was even a spot on the local radio asking people to be on the look out for a Blue Fronted Amazon.
Most importantly, I cried out to God with my wounded heart asking Him to please bring Plato back to us. I was greatly concerned about the eagles, hawks, owls and man. I say man, because I know there are those who would keep such a bird for themselves or cash him in.
Then, the rumors started, that he’d been captured. Then, another one about how a little boy found a dead parrot in the woods. Visions of what could have happened brought horrid imaginations to my crying and praying sleepless nights.
When he was living in the woods, I was able to go down and call for him and he’d answer if he were around. He wanted to fly to me as I asked him to “flutter to Mommy” and he’d take off like 60 and then circled high above me saying “hold on!” He didn’t know how to swoop down so low. In the house, he had the ceiling as his boundaries. Now he was flying with the big boys and the sky was his limit.
Then, early in the morning on July 2nd I walked outside my home and called for Plato and he answered me. I was thrilled to think he had gotten enough nerve to leave the security of the glade and nestle across the street from our house.
He’s getting hungry I thought to myself. I had his cage outside so when he was around he could see the food and water. I called for him and he flew over our home landing somewhere in the top of the trees about two streets away. That was the last I saw him or heard him until…
A gentleman vacationing here in Florida had seen one of my flyers called, and said my bird was in a Palm tree in his front yard. If I had my pajamas on I wouldn’t have risked the time to change my clothes. I could hardly contain my excitement, and threw his night cage filled with fresh water and his favorite seeds into my small car.
When I arrived, I didn’t see him at first. Then, my heart lifted as I saw his head bobbing. He wasn’t doing too well. People began coming out from their homes, as a crowd gathered. I found myself, once again climbing a ladder and rested his cage upon a SUV that was parked next to the Palm tree and called for him. At first his head kept nodding. Then, something clicked inside of him. He eyed his cage, the water and oh the glory of those seeds! And, flew to his cage, and went inside and had a feast. I closed the door and cried. Everyone applauded!
Plato was gone for 11 days. In those 11 days I met my whole neighborhood and shook hands with many people who really cared. God not only heard my heart wrenching prayers, but others who cared enough to pray for him. During those 11 days my hope was watered by those people who cared enough to give me encouraging words. Many kept declaring that Plato would be back. They kept saying that, “they just believed that I would have that bird back.”
God answers prayers, but He doesn’t want you to give up! Keep that hope alive inside of you and surround yourself with people who care and believe your answer is “on the way.”
God cares about us. He cares about our hearts and knows exactly what we are to learn when we go through a trial. I believe our trials come to transform us to the nature of His son. Plato was rescued only one day before hurricane Dennis hit our area. I want to shout to the world; “is there anything to big for God?”
Never give up! I still believe in miracles!