The Caged Bird

Mr. Simon, a 40-year-old widower, had recently shifted to a new house when he found a nest on the window sill in the backyard. The nest had only one egg in it.The mother of that egg was not around and being a keen bird watcher and having done his fair share of studies on birds, he could tell which bird was it. He could tell it just by the size of the egg that it was a Budgie, also known as a Parakeet bird.

Within a few hours of having discovered it, the egg hatched and as he had guessed, it was a beautiful green and yellow Budgie, a perfect pet for him. He waited for a few hours for the mother of the bird to arrive, but she didn’t. In the absence of the mother bird, he took it as his sole responsibility to raise the bird so he started to feed her. He bought millet, which he knew this bird loved to snack on. He got bird food, pellets, fresh water and some seeds and fruits for her.

He was so ecstatic to finally have a company, pet of his own and that too his favourite kind of bird that he even named her “LIRI”. The gorgeous Budgie was now “Liri”. A fancy Albanian word for “freedom”.

After a few days he realized that he will have to teach her how to fly as the baby bird can’t learn it on her own. He knew the techniques that parent bird uses to teach the child so he applied them. He started to keep the food a little farther from the nest motivating the bird to make a move and fly to the food. The bird fell down to the ground a multiple times but could not flap her wings. He even tried to push the bird out the nest , just like the parent bird does, to make her realize that flapping of the birds is necessary to survive. The bird tried flailing her wings but fell down after a few seconds. After numerous attempts she understood that flapping her wings eases her fall and she started to use that muscle.

Within a few days, she could fly from one end of the yard to the other at a low height.
Mr. Simon felt proud of himself for teaching her how to fly.

One fine morning, while he was sipping on his tea in the backyard and watching the bird taking high flights, feeling content with himself, suddenly the bird fell down on the wooden floor from a height.
He ran to the bird and saw that she was hurt. Her wings were drooping unevenly, blood dripping from the left wing. He rushed her to the vet and got her wings treated in time.

Seeing the bird in pain, Mr Simon, a sensitive man could not help but feel full of remorse. Somehow he felt it was all his fault and started to wonder if he taught the right thing to her. She had become a major part of his life, a part of his family and he loved the bird. Losing her meant losing another deep attachment from his life. He had already lost his wife to cancer and he couldn’t do anything about it. He could not save her. But this time he was determined to not let the destiny repeat the same story. Not again.

“If something happens to the bird, i wont be able to live with myself” he thought.
This time he wanted to save the bird. He was determined to protect her at any cost.
While the bird was healing from the injury, He decided to build a cage for her, a cage as large as a room where he could see her all the time, where she would be safe, where she would not have to fear falling from height. A cage where she could spend the rest of her life without the risk of flying high.

“I know whats best for the bird” he kept repeating while working on the construction of the cage.

Meanwhile Liri had healed and learned to fly high. In the few weeks that it took Mr Simon to finish with the cage, Liri had flown to places she never would after being caged. she had found different places, saw different birds in the sky,made new bird friends, she could fly as high as other birds without the fear of falling. Hell, she could even find her food herself and like a loyal pet she would always return to the backyard of her owner in the evenings, her home.

She was living the life, a bird is supposed to not knowing what was in store for her by the man who thought he knew what was best for her. And just like that, she was lured inside the new cage built specially for her, the gate locked forever.

Just when she realized what freedom tastes like, She Was Caged.

Ironic, how her name was so opposite of the kind of life she led.

Dear “owners”

Yes you are the one who gave birth to them. You know whats right for them but sometimes what you think is best for them is doing more harm than good to them. Just let them out of the cage. Set them free. Yes they will fall, not once but many times but that is how they will learn to get up on their own, stronger than before. Let them see the world from their own perspective. Be there to guide them, be there to catch them if and when they fall, just dont let your fear of losing them decide the course of their life. Be their protector but let them learn on their own and no lesson in life could be as meaningful as that to them. Dont cut their wings out of fear that they will fly away. Just let the bird free.

Yours truly,

Just another person who loves freedom

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1 Comment

  1. Kritika Bhardwaj says:

    Wow..this little story has so many sides which appeal to me.. i consider myself an animal lover and the the write up sparked an instant connect between me and Liri (btw 10 points for the nomenclature). Second, its so true that we tend to force (and are also the victims of) our expectations and desires on our beloved ones, not realizing what the other wants.. thirdly, we get an important lesson to learn for maintaining all of our relationships (as well as our personal development)- the importance of freedom and individuality.. last but not the least, the psychoanalytical approach of the essay can help us evolve in day to day life experiences. End of my speech😂😂 sorry was carried away

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