top of page

About Hope

Let me begin by sharing a short story about a pigeon:

A few weeks ago, a plain pigeon landed on my balcony. She flapped her gray wings and bumped into the glass barrier. She stayed on the floor and kept trying to fly up every now and then, continuously hitting the glass and falling back down. I thought she was injured and decided to let her be for the night.

When I came to check on her in the morning she was exactly at the same spot, down on the floor, quiet and alone. Since we were high up on the eleventh floor, I thought she couldn’t fly. I planned to capture her with a blanket and release her downstairs. But watching her struggle against the glass barrier, I realized her wings were intact. She seemed very much alive.

So instead, I decided to help her rise above the glass barrier in the hopes that she would fly. Using a dustpan and a broom-stick, I tried to lift her up. She began to run around, defecating and flapping her wings frantically. Finally, she got on the dustpan and I was able to lift her up quick enough before she would fall off. The moment we got over the glass barrier, she took flight. So quickly and gracefully, she flew out and away like an eagle.

Looking back, I now see it was the hope I held inside of me that the pigeon would be able to fly, which enabled me to be patient with her progress, to support her, and to be able to see her fly before she was able to.

Alexander Lowen, M.D. wrote that “...despair is not the same thing as emotional resignation for despair does not exist without hope. When hope is lost or given up, despair becomes resignation which is a surrender to death.”[1] The pigeon hit the glass too harshly too many times that it seemed she accepted her fate. It made her think she was locked in a glass cage when in