Lessons from a woodpecker. Yesterday afternoon a woodpecker flew into our living room window. It made a loud smacking sound that brought us quickly to our feet. As I looked below the window, I could see the woodpecker laying on the bricks completely still. With the exception of shallow breaths causing the rise and fall of his rear feathers. The bird was so still it took quiet and steady investigation through the window to see that he was indeed breathing. I called a local animal rescue and they informed me that most birds will stay perfectly still after impact for about 30 minutes. “Give him 30 minutes,” she said. “He just needs to be still and get his bearings.” Sure enough at about the 25 minutes mark, the sweet little woodpecker lifted his head up, turned it side to side, sat for a minute and then took flight. So many lessons here, but the one that sits with me so deeply is the recognition of the need to have stillness after impact. I mean, shit, if we could all just learn to do that. “He just needs to be still and get his bearings.” Let’s all remember that.

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