I found this in an old notebook. It was jotted down on April 25, 2008, almost a year ago ~
We were really enjoying Puff today, our ballerina and I. Puff is a newborn duckling who has had some kind of lack of balance since birth. She walks like a drunk and even swims crookedly.
Our ballerina put Puff in a bin of water this morning in the sunlight and – oh! – she swam and swam and swam. Sometimes she swam in a circle so quickly that she was an awkward duck-ballerina and would then fall backwards onto her back, little duck feet flailing, but soon she'd roll over and swim in circles again.
As Puff swam in the morning light, she was full of giddy ducky happiness. It was so contagious that we were soon giggling – no, belly-laughing – at her.
We talked of how we'd ever be able to walk away. Puff "fusses" at us if we leave her side. QUACK QUACK QUACK! She is the loudest thing on the wee farm whenever we walk away from her. When we get close again, she chirps a sweet little tweet-tweet from her nostrils, not her mouth.
Our ballerina offered, with no prodding needed, to sit on the back stoop just to be in Puff's company so the little duck will stop fussing. Staying with Puff is no sacrifice. She's so cute to watch, swimming, crookedly, collecting bits of grass in her mouth, wobbly, in the morning sun.
I find myself lingering, too. Not every day do you see such contagious giddy ducky happiness.
Tonight we lost Puff. She finally lost her battle to live. We had a feeling she'd never make it, but we're still so sad. Still, even though it meant that losing her is harder to take, I'm thankful for this morning…for our sweet moments with our little Puffy in the morning sunlight.