I’ve been blessed with a gift. Every camping trip I’ve been amazed at the animal encounters that I have. I attribute much of this to my father. He notices the little details and that’s what it takes to discover those hard to find animals. I think it’s a gift to find treasures such as these encounters. My husband and I have had the privilege to see up close, in the wild, a fox, whale, marmot, eagle, elk, buffalo with their heads in our car and a bear within a short stone throw from me. Just to name a few.
Can you imagine the excitement when I got to share this gift of a rare encounter with nature with my boys today and knowing that they too may pick up on noticing the details? You see, we had gone to the library today to get some books and we had extra time before lunch. So we stopped by a local park. Someone had left some trash lying around and I encouraged my boys to help put it in the trash barrel. We were about to throw a big sheet of foam in when I noticed a furry thing in the bottom. At first glance I thought how sad that someone threw away their stuffed animal. But on the second glance, I knew that stuffed animals didn’t breath and twitch their ear when I spoke. I couldn’t believe it. I was looking at a cute, although rather big, possum sleeping in the trash barrel. I quickly scooped up each boy, one at a time, lest I drop them head first onto a sleeping possum, and let them discover a wild animal. I thought that after I put the boys down that they’d run off to play, but every few minutes one of them was going back to the trash barrel for a peak. Each time I showed them something different about the possum. We talked about the color of the fur, how thick it was since it was cold outside, how it moved it’s ears to hear us better and that it was sleeping during the day because it stays up at night. I also had the chance to talk about not disturbing or touching a wild animal and mom needs to remember that advice too when I’m out in the wild.
I was just in heaven to see my boys drinking in nature and choosing that over the playground equipment. It just warmed my heart to hear them saying that the possum was sleeping and do not disturb as we drove home. They were still occasionally talking about it right before bed. I am so passionate about any animals and this was definitely a mercy given to me today to cherish. What a diverse and wonderful world the Lord has made for us to discover!