Yesterday afternoon, when I walked in the house, this is the scene I saw at the same back door:
It scared me at first because I thought it was some kind of reptile. I am not friends with the reptiles. At all (Thanks, Eve). We frequently have little skinks running around, but Marbles the Cat usually takes care of them before they get too big. I thought this was one of those icky things and it was enormous. Since I was home alone, a small panic attack ensued.
After a little closer inspection, I saw that it was more rodent than reptile. A little baby squirrel. I was relieved somewhat that it didn't have scales, but the relief didn't last long because I had no idea what to do with a little furry thing either.
I opened the glass door to take a closer look, thinking the noise and movement would scare the poor thing enough to make it run away. He didn't move. He just clung to the screen door.
Still on the other side of the screen door, I tried to get a closer look. There were flies buzzing all around him. There was no movement in him. That led me to believe he was dearly departed. I had no idea how in the world a dead squirrel could be hanging on to my screen door. Looking closer still, I saw his little chest move up and down. He was breathing.
Well, what do I do now?
After shedding some tears over the demise of this little thing, I donned some rubber gloves, gathered up a towel and a shoe box and went outside.
I exited the house from the front door and walked around to the back yard. Along the way, I saw one of his siblings on the ground. Motionless. Gone. I'll spare you the gory details about that one but let's just say I didn't have to get very close to that one to tell if he was alive or dead because, um, there were some parts of him missing.
A few steps further and there was another one. She was gone too. She still had all her parts, but the ants had taken control.
Finally to my little friend clinging to the screen door.
I took that picture before I got too close. I didn't realize he had a yellow jacket on his head until then. Poor thing. His right arm and leg had been sliced open and his head had also taken a beating, but he was still hanging on.
So far, Marbles remains mum. No confession yet.
I wrapped him in the towel. I sat down holding him in the towel. I thought he would expire soon, so I just waited. I was thinking about putting him along with both his siblings in the same hole in the ground.
Then I started thinking about everything but the squirrels just to get my mind off of it. I sat there waiting for Squirt (yes, I gave him a name) to leave this world, I talked to God about families around me; one has a newborn infant in the hospital trying to fight his way into this world; one has a barely older than teenage daughter that just made it through a double lung transplant and is fighting to stay in the world; one is a mother my age that just started chemo, again. I think she's living like she's preparing for eternity.
Life is precious. Life is hard. We need some help. We need someone to wrap us in a towel and just hold us; to hold us until we find a way to make in this world or until we find the way to make it out.
Squirt? Well, his breathing never slowed. At first when I held him in that towel he didn't move. The longer I held him the more comfortable he became. Slowly he came back to life.
When Scott got home he called the vet for advice. Squirt was alive but too weak to be just left outside. You'll be happy to know that we loaded Squirt up in the shoe box that I thought would be his casket and delivered him to an emergency vet clinic that rescues wildlife. They were very happy to have him there. And so were we.
Oh, and this other guy was out there again, too. Just above the door where little Squirt was hanging on.
Pray. Rescue the perishing. You'll be rescued yourself.
If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn't much to you in the first place. Rescue the perishing; don't hesitate to step in and help. If you say, "Hey, that's none of my business," will that get you off the hook? Someone is watching you closely, you know - Someone not impressed with weak excuses. Proverbs 24:10-12