Yes, that is a play on words :)
And no, I didn't get a picture, this is just a random picture of a very young mourning dove for reference.
Okay, so ... here's what happened this morning. :)
So, Mark is working and I'm answering an email. We decided to open up the windows and the balcony door because it's very cool out, perfect weather today.
All of the sudden, a little young dove flies in and lands on the floor in front of me, happy and calm as you please - just waddling across the room, looking at me the whole time.
I knew if I got up too suddenly, it would scare her out, rather than gently usher; however, my husband had different ideas.
Before I could get "Okay, not too quickly, you'll scare it and it will bash itself into the glass trying to get out" out of my mouth, Mark was up and waving his arms in front of it like a crazy man lol.
Well, of course, this resulted in it flying into the bedroom and doing exactly that, trying to fly out the window through the glass.
I said, "Mark - seriously, will you let me handle this one, please? I know birds."
I went and got some sunflower seeds and came back in the bedroom. Nowhere to be found.
Then I said, "Hello, dahling - it's all right. We won't hurt you. I have seeds for you," in a very soft voice.
Out from behind my pillow waddles the little young dove, looking at me.
I sat down on the bed and she waddled over about half way, not sure.
Then of course Mark comes in, "She's going to get hurt and bash herself, just grab her!"
Well, of course, his entrance freaked her out and she flew first landing on his computer monitor, then to the kitchen to my microwave.
So I said, "Shhh, Mark - no, that's not the way to do this, it will traumatize her more to grab with your hands. Let me do this, Mark, okay? Stay calm - if you freak out, she'll freak out, then Brookie will freak out and all hell will break loose. Just stay calm and step back - please. "
So I walked slowly into the kitchen, talking to her softly, almost singing - I could see her little heart almost beating out of her chest.
So I reached up very slowly, talking very softly, and gently put my fingers behind her feet to step back on. (Anyone who's had birds knows this is the non-threatened way to get a bird, never go at them from the front, always slowly, gently approach the feet and touch them, they step back on you fingers almost like a reflex.)
So, there she sat on my fingers until I very gently walked her to the deck, sing-song talking to her the whole way - until we were outside and she flew away!
Mark: "Wow ... good job, honey! I mean ... I can't believe I just watched a wild dove step back onto your fingers and stand on them and carry her across the room and outside, just like it was a trained pet - that was amazing! You never put your hands on her, she just stepped back on your fingers. How did you do that? Animals love you."
Me: "Well, it depends on the animal lol. I doubt I'd have the same effect on lions or wolves, and clearly, certain humans with carnivore temperament lol. Babies and children, tend to dig me, too, I'm not sure why? I've had birds before, though, so I know how to approach them."
"Birds are smarter than people think, they observe and assess you with milliseconds, much like a horse or dog does. Never grab with your hands, any animal, unless they are injured and can't move/fly; otherwise, let them come to you and go/land where they like."
"Animals express affection differently, but they have to trust you before you should even try to touch them, which is something I think we've gotten backwards even with dogs and cats. They'll show you how to show them affection in their world, if you let them come to you, and actual petting is a gift of trust."
"Until then, as with all animals, they need to observe you first - your smell, then whatever sound you're making, then movement - frantic and frenzied VS. calm and casual - and THEN finally touch, IF they trust you."
"So it's all about keeping soft voice, almost sing-song, moving slowly, no sudden movements, see where your hands are and are going at all times - to let them know you're not a threat. "
I'm not sure what the Native Americans might say about this dove home visit, but I'm pretending it's a good omen? lol.
Scripturally, doves mean peace or hard times past, or even the Holy Spirit.