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Life Lessons from an Osprey

Last updated on October 7, 2019

How osprey catch fish and how it relates to overcoming life challenges.

Osprey over Bunche Beach — Original photo by Lloyd Duhon.

The blue sky provided a stark background for this osprey. Fishing is everything to these birds. They have special claws that rotate, allowing them to grip fish and turn them, so that there is less wind drag in flight. This allows the Osprey to capture much larger fish than similar sized birds can.

Specialized skills such as their fishing prowess really helps the osprey to survive. Much like the skills that I have needed to gain to recover after my brain injury.

Special Skills

I have learned vestibular exercises to overcome dizziness and nausea. I have carefully formed new mental coping strategies with the help of psychologists.

…choosing to not measure my new self against my old self.

Then there is the more difficult task of remembering that I have limitations I did not previously have. Not only remembering but also choosing to not measure my new self against my old self.

Barbed Talons

The osprey above also has special barbs in their talons. Those barbs make sure that the grip on the fish is nice and firm, so that when it takes flight again, the fish cannot wriggle away.

However, there is a catch to this awesome power: the osprey are such voracious hunters that they may select a fish that is too large. When this occurs, the osprey may not take flight with its catch, causing the bird to drown.

Finding the balance

This is a journey I continue to walk daily. Sometimes I overdo it with therapies and exercises, taking away time from my family and my writing. When I do that, I’m a lot like that osprey that went for the big game fish. There is no way to take off, and I’m stuck.

To avoid a proverbial drowning, I try to take a measured approach to bringing in new skills and balancing them with old ones that have worked for me in the past.

How do you find the balance in your life? Is there anything that you’re trying to catch that you can’t do on your own?

Published inMediumMindfulness

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