Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Baby Lizard

Saving a life is a wonderful feeling, even if the living creature is very, very small.

I was working outside today in unseasonably warm weather and I noticed two lizards on the walls of our house. It occurred to me that they might need some clean water so I checked the little creature pond and sure enough, the water was filthy with leaves and dirt from the wind storm two nights ago. I had a strange feeling that there was something in the water, but I couldn't see anything because it was too dirty, so I just let it continue to slowly drain through the hose.

I checked on it again about half an hour later and sure enough, there was a tiny, gray, baby lizard floating around the bottom of the pond.

It appeared to be dead. Its claws were clumped together and bent. It was limp, and a little stiff even. Still, I knew I couldn't walk away from the little creature. I pulled the lizard out and held it in my hands, hoping my body heat would bring it around, but it was very stiff. I was about to set it in the dirt and considered burying it, then I saw the slightest movement around the eyes. I still wasn't sure, so I sat in a nearby chair and continued to share my warmth. Still no movement. I set it on the dirt and started to walk away, then realized I just couldn't leave the little thing alone. It looked so helpless, and the water in that pond was icy cold. Perhaps the cold had kept it alive.

I picked it back up and held it in my hand for another half an hour. Suddenly, it lifted its head, then dropped it back down. I gently placed it on a warm rock and stepped away, and sure enough, it lifted its head again. I held my hand over its back, hoping I could still share my warmth that way. Another fifteen minutes later and it raised its head once more, glancing quickly in my direction.

I checked on the lizard throughout the day. An hour later, it had staightened its little claws. Half an hour after that its legs were in a more natural position. Then it moved. It raised its head and raised itself up on its legs. The next time I checked on it, the baby lizard was crawling under a nearby rock. I feel fairly certain it will live another day.

No comments: