The Year of the Bird


(Collage by friend & fellow artist Margaret Harrison.)

One year ago today I was wheeled into an operating room for the removal of what was killing me- my colon. It was Good Friday. It has been some kind of year. So much so that I can’t really wrap my words around it.

I’m still just sitting here after 5 minutes with no words leaking out of my pen. I blinked a couple of times realizing I’d been staring out the window at our bird feeder, ruminating over so much that has happened in the past 12 months. It’s dizzying. It’s breathtaking. It’s sobering. It’s worth remembering.


I gaze at these birds on our feeder and I remember that at one point in the past year I dubbed it the Year of the Bird. For some reason, I was given birds of various sorts both during and after my health ordeal: the above collaged painting of a robin, a sweet small figurine of a bird, a ceramic bird from Spain that warbles when you fill it with water and blow it like a whistle. Even this past Valentine’s Day, my mom made and sent me a collaged bird card.


Perhaps that is the way to hold all that has unfolded the last 365 days…my year as a bird:

-a time of exquisite beauty and dependence.

-a time of strength in helplessness.

-a time of abundant gain in and through losing something.

It’s a year that strangely doesn’t feel like it’s over quite yet. I do face a second surgery at some point in the next year as a follow-up to that first one, a year ago. I shall continue being that bird. Thank you friends and family for your gifts of birds. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers which saw me through it all. I do treasure them and even for the future.

With sincere gratitude,



0 thoughts on “The Year of the Bird

  1. freebirdsings says:

    Well you’ve flown through this year although it got off with a fledgling start. I hope the follow-up surgery will go smoothly and you’ll be totally free after to soar with the wind. Hopefully you won’t be staring out your window wordless at all of it when another year has passed but instead looking at it from way afar like an eagle soaring so high above, a part of it all but with enough distance to see the whole picture and revel in any little thing you see from that vantage point. Thank God for modern medicine and people who do all the research and caring for people so you are still here to sing the tale. Warble on dear Jennifer, you have such a beautiful way to sing your song of ups and downs and all arounds.

    • jenpedwards says:

      Thank you Timaree! You’ll never know how much your words mean to me…”Warble on…” I love that! thank you so much dear friend for all the encouragement you have been to me here on Drawn2Life for so many years! I hope you are happily creating something these days!

    • jenpedwards says:

      Hi Linda! I’ve been mulling over your sweet comment: …beauty flies from your pen… Wow, that really makes my day! Thanks for visiting and taking the time to comment here!

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