My Mom loved hummingbirds. Well, she actually loved all living things. She called them all “babies”, but she especially loved hummingbirds. They were “her” babies, and she scattered feeders around her backyard so they would come and say hello to her when she sat on the back patio. She thought they were the most beautiful things and they moved so fast for something so small. Every Spring the babies would come and share her backyard space until it grew colder, and then they would head south until the next Spring.
The day we interred my Mom’s ashes into her niche at Ft Rosecrans, my sister Darlene, my Dad, Rick and I stood there watching as the men who worked at the cemetery unscrewed the faceplate and slid her ashes inside their new resting place. It was a little dreary out, and a bit chilly. We paid our respects and as we stood there, a tiny hummingbird landed on the fence next to us and just sat there. It looked at us but it didn’t fly away. We were amazed at how close it was; how unafraid and how frail it was. The baby sat there for quite a while, and then flew off towards the ocean. We all felt something; we all felt that Mom had somehow let us know she was there with us. It was a special moment.
Since that time, the single tiny hummingbird has appeared again. When we took Mom yellow roses on her birthday in February, the baby flew down and hovered in front of my sister as she held the flowers. Sitting in the kitchen visiting my Dad, she has flown in front of the kitchen window and sat there watching us talk. There are no feeders or flowers there. Today, we took Mom more roses and there she was, flying in to smell them…..then leaving us again. It’s as if she is acknowledging our gift, our love, our presence, in the only way that she can. Is that baby bird my Mom? Well, if I believed in reincarnation, I could imagine her choosing to come back in this form. So tiny she was; so tiny it is. Beautiful, able to move and go where she wanted…..yes I could.
If by chance reincarnation is real, and Mom……that is you…..I know how much you hate to be cold. You don’t need to hang out here in the winter. There are beaches and flowers just waiting for you. However, I believe in the afterlife and I believe in God, so instead of saying this is my Mom, I would rather it be a sign sent down from God showing us she is happy, carefree, absent of her pain and confusion, and that she sees us still loving her with all our hearts.