a day of surprise

Posted: January 4, 2015 in Uncategorized

I got a pair of bunnies for G as a Hanukkah gift earlier this month.  Their names are Chance and Autumn.  Chance is handicapped and was saved from being “put down” – one of his hind legs sticks way out to the side and doesn’t really work right.  They are sister and brother, but from different litters.  We’ve been having fun with them.  Friends and family have inquired if we were planning for babies, since we have a boy and a girl – certainly not!  The girl who let us adopt them was under the impression that Chance, with his handicap, couldn’t make babies.  I didn’t ask enough questions about why she thought so, Still, G and I had decided that after the holidays we would take Chance in to get snipped, mostly because male animals tend to get aggressive when they’re not “fixed.”  Plus, no harm in being cautious, eh?

Usually when I get home after being out, I stop by the cage to chat with the bunnies a bit, even if I’ve got stuff to do.  Today, though, I rushed into cleanup mode when I got home – there were dishes from the big breakfast I made for my daughter and her family this morning before we sent them home to Kentucky, and there were towels and sheets to be washed.  I noticed the bunnies were making a bit of a racket from time to time, but they do that – they run laps around their deluxe cage.  After all, they hadn’t been out for laps around the living room yet today.

Finally done with my chores, I wandered into the living room and sat down to try to write.  More racket from the bunny cage.  Giant THUMPS.  I only half-noticed, for awhile.  I was concentrating.  Finally, one THUMP too many brought me out of my reverie.  I got up, grumbling.  “What’s with all the noise?”  I asked the bunnies as I crossed the room.  “Is something wrong with your cage, or what?”

Then I leaned over and looked.  Chance was thumping his big bum leg, Thumper-style.  And…on the towel on the floor of the cage – were:  BABY BUNNIES.  I may have said a swear or two at that point.

There were some frantic moments of no idea what to do.  There was a bit of investigation, in which I counted out two healthy-looking babies huddling in a corner, one half-size hairless runt who may or may not be alive, lying on his side, and one bigger than the other two but lying in an odd position, so still that I was sure he must be dead or near it.

All the while, both Chance and Autumn were milling around the cage, stepping on the babies, kind of hysterical.  Ugh.  I pulled Chance out of the cage, which only made him frantic to get back into the cage.  But that did seem to help Autumn to stop stepping on her kids and start acting like a mom.

Since then I have found a second cage to borrow – will get it tomorrow night – and have improvised temporary housing for Chance for the meanwhile in the big plastic tote I bought last week for storing Christmas decorations, topped with a window screen.  I am trying to give Autumn space so she can calm down and mother.  I am feeling sick about whether the two oddballs will live or not – further watching has determined that nobody is dead, at least yet.

Life.  It’s full of surprises, eh?

Which takes me to what I was thinking of writing about before I happened upon the surprise baby bunnies:  change.

2015 promises to be a year of big change in our family.  In May, I will attend my son’s wedding in Iowa.  A week later, I will attend my son-in-law’s graduation from Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky.  In the following weeks or months, my son-in-law will become some sort of pastor in an Illinois church, location yet to be determined, which will mean a move for my daughter’s family after nearly six years in their current town.  In late July or early August, my son and his wife will follow a dream and move to the west coast.  2015 will for sure be a year we’ll remember.

I’m excited about it all.  I love having adult kids.  I’m filled with anticipation and delight about the wedding, and about my grandbaby and her parents living closer to me (anywhere in Illinois has to be closer than Kentucky!)  I’m pleased and proud that my son is striking out on such a big adventure, though I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t also pretty sad about how far they will be away from me.

God willing and the creek don’t rise, my parents will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in August, with an event that will honor well the accomplishment and blessing of that journey.  In 50 years, my parents have met surprises and challenges, heartbreak and miracles and much more.  They have “started over” in a number of ways, a number of times.  I know from watching and listening to them that life sometimes seems like a series of “surprise baby bunnies” days.

The details above are just a few things we know. What I know for sure is that there is much that we DO NOT know.  Like the surprise baby bunnies, 2015 will hand us the unexpected.  It’s not hard to guess that there will be stuff we will welcome, and stuff we wouldn’t wish for.  Life is like that – which makes me glad that while I may not know the future, I know the One who holds it – who holds ME. Who is the only One who can do much about any of it at all.

Here’s to 2015.  May we face it with courage and hope.  May we remember that we are not alone as we face it.  May we be audacious.  May we be surprised by grace.  May mercy wrap us each around.

  1. Cindy Maynard says:

    Love this! And it is so true!! Life is full of surprises.

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