Normally, we watch videos to keep us entertained. We expect these short, 10-minute or even 1-minute videos to be packed with laughs, surprises, and soundbites. It should be captivating enough to hold our attention and refrain us from switching to the next video. But tuning in to this live feed of a bald eagle nest where not much action happens, except for the occasional eating, brushing the snow off their feathers, or adjusting their positions, is surprisingly calming and inspiring. Even if it appears that they’re just sitting all day long, the eagles are actually working so hard, braving a snowstorm to keep their eggs warm.
A lot of the viewers say that the eggs are not going to hatch because they’re past the point of the usual incubation period (35 days). That the eggs are soon going to disintegrate and become food for the ravens. At first I got sad and couldn’t take to watch anymore. It actually hurts to see them persevering in freezing temperatures for nothing. But I remembered something I’ve read from Mary Oliver’s Upstream. That nature is beautiful but it can be harsh as well. Nature has a dark side and we have to accept it along with its beauty.
As of this writing, over 14 thousand people are watching Jackie, Shadow, and their eggs. I am certain that most of these people also feel a strong sense of connection to nature when they are able to witness it up close. It actually feels like a privilege, watching the eagles sit still for hours. It evokes a sense of calmness and inspires me to be patient. It’s an opportunity to appreciate nature’s subtleties and complexities, even when it appears to be doing nothing at all.
Just like in life, wishing every day to feel like a thrill is too much of an expectation. Sometimes, it is enough to witness life as it is and be grateful for the occasional laughs, excitement, and adventures.