The One-Legged Bird

I’ve always heard that a bird with one leg can’t survive.

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This makes perfect sense in that if a bird only has one leg, it can’t land and if it can’t land, then it can’t take off. So the theory that a bird with one leg can’t survive sounds perfectly justified right. Wrong….. it seems that I’m always finding a story when I go somewhere to eat. Just recently while on the job, I pulled into a Hardees in Big Stone Gap, Virginia and ordered a special ham sandwich with pickles and onions. While sitting alone and looking out the large window in front of me, I saw a flock of birds land in the grass and one bird kind of stumbled when it landed. My eyes went to that one bird as I watched it hop and stumble. It was just another bird with the exception that each time it moved it would hop and stumble. Soon for whatever reason, all of the birds flew into the air and took up a new position just outside the window. This one little bird flew straight toward the glass where I was sitting and I saw up close why this bird was acting differently, it only had one leg. I was amazed as it went about just like an ordinary bird with the exception that when it took a long stride it would hop and stumble. That didn’t deter that bird one bit, it was normal in every sense. The theory was wrong. Just because a handicap may be obvious to us, we shouldn’t pass judgements that a person isn’t able to do something.

This little bird was perfectly able to do what birds do.  I had a teacher in high school Mr. Sturgill, and he had a prosthetic arm in the form of a hook.  He could open doors, pick up a book, dress himself and more. One day I was running down the hall as an excited teenager would, “I was on my way to see my girlfriend”, Mr. Sturgill reached out and grabbed me by my shirt.  I was stopped immediately.  He wasn’t handicapped, he was normal….. he was different, but he was normal.  We all know the name Hellen Keller.  She was deaf and blind but she was normal. She didn’t let what we call a disability hold her back, she was an author, a motivational speaker, and a social activist who inspired and still inspires others to greatness.

I watched that bird hop and stumble but it kept going.  Then it spread it’s wings and in just a second of time it used it’s one good leg to launch into flight once more.  I watched as all of the birds grouped together into a flock and this one little bird once again blended in to the flock.  With winter approaching, I know it will survive.  Theories are only that, “Beliefs that we have but are not proven.” Another form of Prejudice :  I wonder if anyone had told that little bird that it was not possible for him to fly, would he have given up?

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The Power of Positive Speaking

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