A couple days ago, I rescued a baby rabbit from the harmful attacks of my cat, Milky. Luckily, he didn’t appear to be too injured, so I wrapped it up in a nearby hand towel while my brother made a makeshift cage for it (a large laundry basket with towels in the bottom). After struggling to get the rabbit to eat, he finally settled for some nice warm milk and water.
From reading the above description, it’s hard to imagine or even write how much care and affection I took towards mothering this rabbit. I have a very sensitive heart towards animals, especially young ones. I looked up ways to make the rabbit feel more comfortable (which I could tell you all about) and the proper things to feed it. I spent hours trying to make it feel comfortable and an even longer time pondering in the back of my mind how it must be feeling. I can only imagine how scared he was and how much he missed his mother and wondering if he was ever going to see the outside again.
Luckily for him, I brought him outside earlier today to expose him to the sunshine and his beloved home. At first, I held him, but then I thought it best to set him down in the grass and let him decide if he wanted to leave or stay. At this point, there were no visible signs of a depleted health. He chose to leave. As I saw him scamper off into the distance, my heart ached a little as I thought of how he still might not make it in the wild despite my efforts.
Today, I learned the very important lesson of letting go and the sacrifice it takes. Although I only had that baby rabbit for a few short days, I loved it and thought about it as if I had owned it forever. I can only imagine how hard it must be for parents, and soon to be my parents, to see their children leave as we head off for college. Their whole worlds revolve around us and my heart can only ache to imagine the amount of sacrifice that it takes for them to let us go into a greater unknown than the comforts our own backyards.