Every year, around Mother's day, orioles appear. They are magnificient. If I'm lucky, they will nest in an old birch tree that is rooted just beyond my deck.
May is a difficult month and the birds comfort me. May is all about Mother's Day and Memorial Day. Memorial Day is the holiday that coincided with the death of my son in 2002.
This Memorial Day, I received a call from David. David is Tinder date number #3. David and I had been canoodling since February of this year. David and I did fun things together. David liked electronic dance music, bar food, and New Orleans. David introduced me to his family, friends and coworkers. I really liked David's family, friends, and coworkers. David was well respected by his peers and appeared to be a kind, nurturing father to his three daughters.
David, despite his uncanny resemblance to a toucan (and believe me, you can't judge a bird by his beak), was the perfect Mr. Right Now.
Until he dumped me, on Memorial Day, for "someone better."
David did this knowing it was the anniversary of my son's death. In David's well rehearsed break-up speech, he insisted on telling me how wonderful she made him feel.
And I couldn't help but wonder... how long have I been attracted to selfish men?
Two weeks before Memorial Day, my soon-to-be-X-husband agreed to stay at my home and watch our dogs while I went to Newport with Toucan David. I came home to find his idiot brother, perched in a lawn chair in the driveway, eating pizza and drinking beer. There was no sign of my soon-to-be-X-husband and the house was trashed.
When I told my idiot, soon-to-be-X-brother-in-law, to leave and he refused, I picked up the garden hose that he had just used to wash his Porsche, and hosed him down. When he yelled in protest, I aimed for his mouth. It was like one of those carnival games, where you aim your water pistol at the clowns mouth.
When I offered to wash the inside of his Porsche, he agreed to leave. The next day, I changed my locks and had an alarm system installed.
On Memorial Day, I set out for a walk and spotted a dead barn sparrow stuck in a glue trap along the neighboring carport rafters where they nest.
I first noticed the traps a few weeks back, but thought they were cardboard cut-outs set to discourage the sparrows from nesting. What a horrific death that must have been (I will not post that picture).
Earlier in May, I was told that the swallows swooped one of the building owners who is handicapped and uses a motorized scooter to get from his car to the building.
I have to assume he approved, if not initiated the trapping, and I find it ironic that a physically disabled person would subject an animal to such barbaric restraints.
On Memorial Day, I called PETA and learned that barn swallows are protected under the "Migratory Bird Act of 1918" and that it is illegal to intentionally kill, injure, or destroy them, their nest, or their eggs.
On Memorial Day, I watched the on-call building maintenance man remove the glue traps.
On Memorial Day, I waited for a call, text, or email from my soon-to-be-X-husband. Thinking surely he would reach out knowing how difficult this day is for me - how difficult this day was for US.
The call never came. But the awakening did.
On Memorial Day, I realized that I have been attracted to selfish men for a very long time.
I have always admired the barn swallows. They are loyal. They are fearless. They are resilient.
And so am I.
xo, Monkey Me