Today I was talking to someone who used to run a rescue in an area near us. I had been a spectator when his rescue had come under some scrutiny and ultimately closed its doors for good and it got me thinking.
Often we hear things and we just automatically believe them. It’s kind of a flawed approach really. I’m guilty of it – completely guilty. If someone tells me something and I have a percentage of trust in them as a person then I just believe what they say.
I’ve always envied people who say they give people a chance until they do something that makes them not want to give them any more chances. I’ve always wanted to be that kind of person – yet when I have it’s kind of gone pearshaped for me.
I remember leaving my high school to go to a different sixth form. There was this trip during the Summer holidays to York so everyone could have some fun before A-level work started. I was new and it was terrifying getting on thast coach and not knowing a single person. There were three people who spoke to me and befriended me – but at the same time I was absolutely petrified of being an outsider for the entire trip. I was so petrified that when this one person approached me over a love of the same obscure band (Faster Pussycat) we immediately became the best of friends. People warned me about her and I ignored them – glad to have someone who seemed to “get me”.
A year later and I was in hospital with pneumonia when this person told the whole year that nobody got pneumonia unless they had AIDS. So the approach has never really worked out for me and I became one of those people who can taken another person’s word for it.
So what is the right response? Should we listen to what people say and risk unfairly judging someone? Or should we give them a chance, see what happens and risk possibly making a lot of bad choices?
This has absolutely nothing to do with bird rescue really and I apologise – but the rescue world (as I’ve said before) is full of people who aren’t necessarily as kind to people as they are to what they are rescuing. It’s hard to navigate the world of rescue without coming into quite a few people you could have happily lived your entire life having never met.
The problem is that it changes us as people when things like this happen. I have seen myself become less trusting, less likely to give people a real chance, less likely to open up to others or let them help me. It’s sad really because the majority of those people are probably genuine. I guess this post is meant to explain why when people offer to help in the rescue I don’t always seem particularly receptive – I’ve been let down alot in the past and stabbed in the back so often I could make a pretty useful sieve. I read about it happening in other rescues too – on Facebook the number of posts I read where it has happened to other people can be astonishing.
I remember getting a call once from a lady who ran a hedgehog rescue. The same person had volunteered for us both at different times and I remembered the way she spoke about the lady at the hedgehog hospital the first time I met her. Now she probably speaks about me in exactly the same way. Some people are just trouble with a capital T and unfortunately they don’t have to wear a badge.
Okay so I’ve gone off at a tangent yet again – I am blaming the relentlessness of baby bird season, exhaustion and pain meds.
I guess this is a huge thank you to those genuinely awesome human beings who step in to do collections for me, who stop when they see an injured bird and get it some help. It’s for those who make donations off our Amazon Wishlist and bring me to tears with their generosity every single time. It’s for those who put out water in the heat and fill up their feeders. It’s for every one who makes the world a little lighter just by being in it and to remember that even those who have made our world a little darker sometimes are probably the light in someone-else’s too.