House Wren.

Parent Talk

Some of my most remarkable experiences come from moments when not a word is spoken.

That may surprise you coming from someone who makes a living using words. But words are only a part of language. What we do, our appearance, our bodies in motion or sitting still often times speaks much louder than words.

Such was the case for me yesterday.

It was a look.

At first I sensed a cautious mistrust. They looked at me and wondered why I was standing there.

I looked at them and wondered if I did indeed frighten them.

I stood my ground as they appeared more nervous never turning their backs on me.

They spoke with their children reassuring them that they were near and all was well.

I immediately connected with them because we were both parents. Maybe I should have said something, but I am not sure they would have understood or even trusted me more. Besides, I didn't speak their language.

In these times when it comes to our children, we should never let our guard down.

Our eyes connected. I smiled. They went on about their business.

I wanted nothing more than to watch them safely from a distance. They were young and fussing over a set of new born. We haven't had babies in our lives for many years so all of this brought back memories.

Their kids were hungry and I guess I must have finally given them both a sense that I meant no harm. One parent left for a moment, perhaps to get something for the kids.

I looked away periodically so as not to make them feel uncomfortable.

Suddenly, dad returned with some special treats and the kids went wild. I can remember spoiling my own children, too.

As they settled down, both parents turned to look at me. I felt at that very moment they understood. Maybe, one day in the future they, too will find themselves watching another family, remembering the days when they were young, the children small and life filled to the max with love.

I then reached down and in an effort to assure them I could relate, I held my own little child. Yes, this past Father's day I was given a new addition to my family. His name is Phil.

Who is Phil? A Chihuahua mix now just 12 weeks old given to me by my wife. Yes, we now have three dogs. Ricky, Lucy and Phil.

Oh, and the family I spoke of? House Wrens nested in one of five bird houses in our yard.

Not a word spoken, just "Parent Talk."

Yes, parenting is for the birds, too.

~ Bob Perks ~

[ by: Bob Perks Copyright © 2008 ( -- {used with permission} ]

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