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The Dying Snake

Happy fall!



Last Wednesday was such a nice day, and Brady got home early from school, so we took a bike ride. When we turned around in the Hunter's Point parking lot, he said, "Mummy, let's stop! Over there!" and he pointed to our usual bike parking spot.


Since we did not have to be anywhere else in a hurry, we parked.


I'm so glad we did. The waves were so fun!


Usually, when the waves are this splashy, the weather is gray, chilly and windy, but we were in the aftermath of a storm... with sunshine!


He sat down in the rocks in an area that could potentially get sprayed. And he loved every minute!



Luckily, he knows plenty of tuck an roll moves to avoid it. If you'd like to see a sweet video of this, you can click here. Watch it til the end!


Then we biked around Trails End campground on their new Orchard Trail. It's pretty fun for our set-up!


And on the way back to the main HP Trail, we saw something... different.


A dying snake.


It was freshly run over on the road, and the first few vertebra were visibly broken and kinked.


We saw it writhing and struggling.. I didn't know how this would end, but we got off to investigate. (This story gets a little gory and includes a picture of a snake. You've been warned!)


So we bent down to watch this snake struggle with its life. It was very wiggly, but couldn't make any headway -- it just wiggled in the same spot on the road.


"Oh, poor baby!" I wailed to the snake. "He's dying, Braeden! What do we do?"


Brady was very observant and somber the whole time. He was taking it in more than I knew.


But just like that, the snake gave its final twitch that moved like a slow, blipping wave through its body. We watched as it seemed to give up from the head to the middle to the tail. It was so slow and deliberate, I predicted how it would end. Blood began to leak from its mouth and eyeballs.


When the tail waved its final goodbye, I lamented, "Poor, honey! Oh no! Brady, it's dead! What do we do? Should we put it in the woods?"


"Mummy, I want to pet it," he answered.


"Okay," I motioned. But he did not.


I started to pick it up by the tail, but boi-oi-oi-oing! I dropped it to the pavement. It started to wiggle all over again. Yikes!


At least I knew what I was in for. We had to get that snake in the woods. I thought about smashing its head for the final, but in this case, I didn't think that was the right thing to do. It wouldn't be in pain much longer. I could tell.


With a bit of thrashing from the snake, I lifted it with two sticks. "Want to pet it?" I asked again.


"No." he backed away.


I laid it in the grass and we said our final goodbyes. It was apparent in the way I spoke that I felt great pity for this snake. I don't like to watch an animal die. Not many people do.


I'm not sure why, but I took a picture of the snake in its final resting place.



Not a tiny snake.


Here's where all of Brady's absorption manifested.


If you read the dead squirrel story, you'll know that he shows a lot of reverence and respect for dead animals. Here's what he did that day.


He became the dying snake!


Instead of mounting the bike when I asked, he laid on the ground and wiggled around.


"Mama, I'm a dying snake! Help me!" he cried.


Oh, geez. I was a little annoyed before I realized why he was doing that. He could feel the compassion and love I gave the snake, and he wanted to feel it too. I knelt by him and put my arms around his kicking body. "Oh no! Poor baby!" I wailed dramatically.


It took quite a bit more sympathy and time before I could convince him to get back on the bike. Maybe I should have offered to pick him up with two sticks!


But I was really curious how he would react to the whole scene. He literally embodied it. Maybe because he didn't touch it? I'm not sure. Perhaps that's how he showed his reverence this time.


Okay, off with snakes and into the meadow. We took a lovely stroll on the day before Brady's birthday. He even picked where we would go.



He lead the way like a boss. I mean, really. Would you mess with that guy? Ha!


We threw some rocks and wandered around the field. It was a lovely way to spend his last day as an eight-year-old.


I hope you find a lovely way to spend some time too!

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