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Thread: Remembering Malachite

  1. #1
    Hatching Psychotic Parakeet's Avatar
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    Arrow Remembering Malachite

    Malachite would have been 4 years old on March 3rd. I can only hope that the story I am about to share opens your senses to the gateways into your very heart and soul of how much love you can feel for these magnificent animals. I sacrificed everything for Malachite; even when my own health was in serious condition. The price you pay for love is grief, and Malachite's short life on this Earth taught me a lot about myself and her strength to live...

    Please read this story in its entirety. Thank you...


    Malachite came into the world as the second born (out of clutch of 3 eggs) at 7:53 p.m. on March 3, 2004. Her mom, Miss Jay, and dad, Parentheses, were first time parents. Strangely enough, her older sibling hatched a few minutes prior to Malachite's arrival and died hours later. The third egg never hatched and Malachite was the sole survivor.

    Both of her parents raised her lovingly until up to her 8th day. I noticed Parentheses was not really into helping out Miss Jay anymore. Two days later, Miss Jay spent less and less time taking care of Malachite. Pretty soon, things became worse. On her 11th day of life at near midnight, I kept hearing Malachite scream. Miss Jay and Parentheses ignored her cries. I got up and took a look. I placed my hand on Malachite's body and she was cold as ice. She was barely clinging to life.

    I put Malachite on a heating pad wrapped in fleece that had yellow toy duck patterns on it. After many minutes, she finally came around and was showing more signs of life. She kept crying and I decided to see if she was hungry. Luckily, I had Kaytee's hand-feeding formula on hand (my cockatoo occasionally likes to eat it) and the poor little thing was so gracious for food. After she was done, she curled up and snoozed within the soft fleecy layers. From that day on, I hand-fed her everyday from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. (about every 2 hours and longer breaks when she was eating on her own).

    When she made it through the night and I woke up early on the morning to check in on her, I noticed something was not quite right. Her right leg was deviated and bent backwards far away from her body and the other leg was slightly off. Her legs needed corrective help. I looked on line for temporary solutions and I came up with the string method and it did not work. During that frustration of wondering what to do, I started feeling dizzy and nauseated. I ignored my symptoms for days and continued taking care of Malachite and wondered if that is the reasoning behind her parents' "abandonment"? I got an appointment finally from one avian veterinarian after waiting for days to try to fix her problem.

    I took Malachite to the vet and the attending doctor wrapped her legs and created a thing for me to keep Malachite as still as possible and such. Here she is in her "temporary holding unit"



    My owner health and symptoms became worse by the day until it got to the point I could not walk without falling over. I knocked myself unconscious hitting my head onto a table in my den. My eyes constantly rolled and I felt severe vertigo. Went to urgent care and my allergies backed up into my sinuses and spread infection into my ears so it affected my balance and such. I was forced a one week medical leave from my work and not allowed to move around. Poor Malachite. She got bent out of shape my mom was hand-raising for her a while as she constantly chirped for me (we had a chirp to call out to each other).

    Even during my sickness, I mustered up the strength to take her to the vet every other day for a recheck. She was growing right before my very eyes:



    As I got better, her left leg became a lot better, but her right one was so deviated at the joint that it will unfortunately be a permanent problem. A special cage was made for her with cage racks instead of perches and I gave her the liberty of never having her wings clipped. She learned to adapt quite well and was the sunshine of my life.

    It took longer to wean Malachite due to her disability. She would get so excited to hear the beeping of the microwave as she knew that it was food. She would start chirping her head off. When she became strong enough to balance herself, she learned how to fly. She would fly to me. She would fly on top of my chest and shimmy her way up to my neck and cuddle up with me. Mali loved to groom and play with my hair. She also learned that this was the perfect time to solicit cheek and neck rubs with her little "Err?" noise. Since she was unable to bathe herself, would take her up to the sink and let a small stream of water run into my cupped hands and she would wallow into its small pool.

    When I had Malachite out, she would spider crawl into and through her favorite fleecy toy duck covers or fly to look for me. I still spoiled her once in a while with a thickened up dollop of her baby food with some millet. Those were her two favorite things in the world to eat. She would occasionally give off a little attitude (like her mom, Miss Jay) and I would put her back in her cage as a form of correcting the problem. After 15 minutes or so, she would go down to the bottom of the cage and start chirping. If I was not around, she would tear up the papers. LOL

    Unfortunately, on Thanksgiving Day in '04, her dad flew really hard into the side of the cage and suffered head trauma. He died instantly after the accident. Miss Jay went into mourning and was never the same after his death.

    Malachite turned a year old. As a present, I wanted to introduce some of my other parakeets to see if they would want to start a friendship with her since she was so social. Not a great idea. The first thing they did was peck and bite her bad leg. Malachite was so scared and upset. I immediately took her out of the situation and felt bad about it. I guess Malachite's key to socialization would be my daily interaction with her.

    In February 2006, one of the parakeets at my work was found with his right leg caught in between the bars of the cage. He was dangling by hardly anything. His name was Polo. Polo ended up getting the rest of his right leg amputated. I took him home to recuperate. After observing for 3 or so days, he came around and was acting normal. I took a risk and put him in with Malachite. It was the best risk I could ever take.

    Malachite and Polo became fast friends. They would groom each other. Polo learned how to get around her cage with one leg easily. I cooked some of his favorite food, "Cheese Teaser", the Beak Appetit diet food. She learned to love it. Polo was always a loner at my work and as was Malachite. They found comfort through each other:



    On Malachite's second birthday, March 3rd, 2006, Polo was found dead at the bottom of her cage. She was right next to his body chirping to him and grooming his neck. It broke my heart to see her trying to make him move and respond. I took his body out and she started chirping crazily and was flapping around all over the cage looking for him. She continued this behavior for nearly three weeks and wanted none of my attention or affection. She finally gave up.

    Her depression scared me. She was not her "lovey dovey" self anymore. She would sometimes be nice with me, but it was not like old times. I tried putting in new toys to distract her to no avail. She spent hours just tearing up newspaper. That is all she wanted to do.

    On Easter afternoon, I came back home early after some festivities because I was tired. I said my 'hellos' to her. She was at the bottom of the cage moving around an empty sprig of millet and tearing up the paper as usual. I took a snooze for a couple hours. I got up to make her some baby food to see if that would make her happy. Something was wrong... She did not chirp crazily hearing the microwave beeping.

    Concerned, I walk backed into my room and looked into her cage. She was at the bottom. I stuck in my hand and touched her. I could not believe it. She was gone... Her little spirit left this life and into the next. My Mali was dead.

    I cried my eyeballs out. I could not believe it. My little angel was gone forever. I could have taken in her body for a necropsy to see what happened, but I decided to leave things alone. Her death will always be a mystery.

    I took her favorite toy out of her cage, a pacifier, to bury with her, along with a couple of Polo's feathers, so a part of him goes with her (I did the same for him too with her feathers). I wrapped her body within her favorite fleece ducky throw as I know it will give me comfort in knowing that her favorite things are with her; even in death. I said my tearful goodbyes, garnished the top of her fleece throw with flowers and buried her. She is buried right next to her dad. Unfortunately, four months later, her mom, Miss Jay, succumbed to ovarian cancer. She was buried right next to her daughter. The family is back together once again for eternity.

    Sometimes at night, I look up at the sky and imagine Malachite's spirit flying among those stars. I can only hope that she is appreciative of all I have done for her and I return the same notion as I am grateful she taught me a lot about life and how a handicap does not stop you from living. I am glad I gave her a second chance and that she instilled that trust within me to guide her through, thick and thin.

    Her death still is painful for me to fathom; even now. These animals find a way to worm themselves into your very heart and they take a part of it with you when their days on Earth are done. I miss Malachite and I can only hope that someday and somehow, I will see her again.

    Thank you, Malachite. Thank you for being an ambassador to your species of what the true meaning of courage, tenacity, will-power and teaching the sacredness of the bond and trust between yourselves and to your humans means.

    ~*~*~*~MALACHITE!*~*~*~
    March 3, 2004 - April 16, 2006
    Owned by an Umbrella Cockatoo; 16 American Budgerigars; 10 English Budgerigars; 3 American-English Budgerigar crosses; 13 Cockatiels & 2 Canaries
    (Godmother of budgie (Pixel) and a cockatiel (Irwin)that are staying with me!)
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  2. #2
    AKA 'Follyfoot Farm' Tailfeather
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    oh my gosh!

    that was a sad and beautiful story. thank you so much for sharing.

    it touched me especially, because i had a very similar story with my budgie , Chopper.


    he was abandoned by his mother who was an aviary bird, and she killed 2 out of 4 chicks by neglect. i did not know she was neglecting them, i wish i could have known before, then maybe i could have saved the other 2. i found charlie and chopper in time *they were about 4 weeks old then* and fed them a bit but they were almost already weaned.

    charlie went into the aviary, but chopper has a bad foot aswell, and he tends to waddle along a perch. rather than perch like a 'normal' budgie.

    he now lives with a rescue bird that my co worker named Chullo, and chullo is like the father chopper never had. chullo has taught chopper everything he knows, and whilst chopper is an aviary bird and is weary of people, he will still snuggle on your hand because thats what chullo does.

    chullo was given to my work by someone who found him left in the apartment they were moving into. the last tenants 'forgot' him... despite this is is very forgivng and is such a lovely little man.

    they are both happily living in a cage inside, and dont fuss to much about all the other budgies outside, they have each other, thats all they want.

    so i can fully sympathise and understand your situation.

    i send you my deepest condolences for your loss, and thank you for sharing your beautiful story which brought a tear to my eye

    *hugs* to you my friend.
    Last edited by Melza; 03-02-2008 at 11:03 PM.

    Before you ask, yes I am a b!tch...
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    Slighty Obsessed Hatching larkee's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite


    That is such a sad story!

    I am SO SORRY for you loss
    It's great that you can remember the two years that you were with her though

    RIP MALACHITE
    Fly Free Olive, Ivy, Sunny, Cloud and Azul

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    Brand New Egg Antoinette's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    What a sad story, but we all needed a reminder to appreciate every single day shared with our winged friends. We sometimes take so many things for granted, and then this happens just as a wake-up call to say: love and enjoy what we have, 'cause things can change so quickly....

    RIP Malachite, the other angels are with you, hope you are at peace and happy.
    Snowy, Peppi, Rajah, Boddi, Peanuts, Pixie, Jojo and 18 others

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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    that is so sad
    you took such great care of Malachite and also the rest of your flock. l'm sure they knew how much you loved them.
    thanks for sharing your story with us.
    Last edited by silverfox; 03-03-2008 at 09:27 AM. Reason: sp error

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    Tailfeather boomer girl's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    What a sad but yet so loving story, I cried and could just feel your sadness and your loss. I am happy Malachite was able to survive and you both got share your love for each other. I do know the love your feel and how hard it is when they are handicapped. My boomer has been ill for 2 1/2 years now and each morning I worry how he wake up feeling. I truly never knew how much love one little bird could have for us but boomer has taught me how loving and attached we are to them and they are to us. You just got to love your animals like they are your own kids and then when there time is up in your heart you know you did everything you could to make there life happy.

    Thanks for sharing Malachite's story with us... Hugs to you!
    Fly Free Boomer, we will forever love you.

  7. #7
    Hatching Psychotic Parakeet's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    Thank you, all of you, for reading this. When these birds have a disability, you not only sympathize that they can never be "normal", but they just wow you that they adjust pretty readily and learn to get around just fine.

    For a while, Malachite's cage was near my cockatoo's. She learned how to imitate his griping and tantrumatic screams and then when I moved her into my room, she learned how to chirp and whistle like my cockatiels. LOL
    Owned by an Umbrella Cockatoo; 16 American Budgerigars; 10 English Budgerigars; 3 American-English Budgerigar crosses; 13 Cockatiels & 2 Canaries
    (Godmother of budgie (Pixel) and a cockatiel (Irwin)that are staying with me!)
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    That was a beautiful story, it very much reminds me of the bond I had with my deceased hamster Princess. When she was a baby she had wet tail. The vet was an idiot and basically told me to just throw her in the garbage can because she would never make it. I had to syringe-feed her antibiotics and around-the-clock Pedialyte and baby food for over a week. I always was so endeared to her because she pulled through that horrible situation and was so grateful to me, I know she knew that I helped her survive. Just like Malachite loved you so much for what you did for her.

  9. #9
    Hatching Psychotic Parakeet's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    Quote Originally Posted by starla View Post
    That was a beautiful story, it very much reminds me of the bond I had with my deceased hamster Princess. When she was a baby she had wet tail. The vet was an idiot and basically told me to just throw her in the garbage can because she would never make it. I had to syringe-feed her antibiotics and around-the-clock Pedialyte and baby food for over a week. I always was so endeared to her because she pulled through that horrible situation and was so grateful to me, I know she knew that I helped her survive. Just like Malachite loved you so much for what you did for her.
    Thank you for sharing that story. See what a little bit of dedication and research on your behalf did? Greatest feeling in the world.

    A lot of people thought I was nuts spending money on a "cheap bird" to ensure her very survival. She never indicated to me she was in pain or suffering so I kept her going. If that was the case, I would have had her humanely euthanized long ago. Even the attending veterinarian gave me a lot of credit for helping her because she said very few owners do things for the small birds.
    Owned by an Umbrella Cockatoo; 16 American Budgerigars; 10 English Budgerigars; 3 American-English Budgerigar crosses; 13 Cockatiels & 2 Canaries
    (Godmother of budgie (Pixel) and a cockatiel (Irwin)that are staying with me!)
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    I don't understand how someone can see an animal's life as "cheap" because it retails for a small amount of money. I totally get what you're saying, I had to drive two hours to the emergency vet because I noticed the wet tail on a Saturday. No joke, I was there for five hours as dog after dog was seen by a vet before my hamster. A person with a dog could walk in and be seen in 15 minutes, while I sat there for hours with tears streaming down my face and a little hamster in plastic travel cage. My hamster was dying, but to that vet, any other animal was more important. What's more, I had to tell the vet what antibiotic to give me because they didn't even know what wet tail was, and when they went to read about in their book (rollseyes)...she basically said "here's some antibiotics but she's gonna die anyway". That, after I had waited so long. I was even kicked out of waiting in the vet's office when it was finally my turn so yet another dog could be seen before my hamster. It's crazy.

  11. #11
    I'm A budgieaholic Tailfeather kathy5's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    hugs to you on this very hard day
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    First Baby Hatched! parrotsRmyLove's Avatar
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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    Thank you so much for sharing your story, it was sad but yet very touching.

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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    I am sorry for your losses *hugs* such a sad story

    ULII & CALISTO

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    Re: Remembering Malachite

    That is so sad. I cried so much reading it and sharing the story with my siblings around me. I guess it reminded me of Sweetie who died on the way to the vet. But I am grateful that Malachite had such a caring owner like you.

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