I believe what they say about young children and animals seeing things we adults cannot always see. This incident was validation to me that this is true.
My dad past away when my youngest daughter was only 4. They had a really special bond, my dad adored my little girl and spoiled her rotten. She never wanted to leave his side, most of the time preferring to be with him instead of playing with her brother and sister. My daughter was taking ballet at the time, she would come home from her practice and dance for my dad. He was very patient with her and would applaud her and tell her she was a beautiful ballerina. They would always take their meals together and she would talk endlessly, often telling him stories of fairies and unicorns she would make up.
My dad had a parrot that would talk and do some tricks but would only do them for him. One of his tricks was that when my dad put his finger out and tell him "give me your foot", the parrot would put his foot in my dad's finger. He never did it for anyone, not even my daughter who was always at my dad's side. The parrot's name was "Guero" which translates to "blond", he was named this because he had yellow feathers on his head.
I was really concerned for my daughter after my dad past away thinking that it was going to be especially hard for her. I was dreading having the talk with her about why she wasn't going to see "Daddy Mel" anymore. I had already told my two oldest and decided I needed to tell her now. It was just me and her in my bedroom and I started by telling her that I had something to tell her about Daddy Mel, I explained to her that he had to leave to go to a place where he wasn't going to be sick anymore. She interrupted me and said "yes, I know, he told me not to be sad". I thought maybe he had talked to her before he passed since he had been sick for a while but then I wasn't' so sure.
Days following our talk we started noticing that she would go off on her own and would be laughing and talking to someone, every time we came in the room she would stop what she was doing and when asked who she was talking to she would say "nobody". We saw her dancing a few times and saying "look what I can do" and then bowing to someone we couldn't see. She liked to go in empty rooms to be by herself and I would have to look for her and bring her out. She also didn't mourn like my other two children which were just a few years older than she was. The other two would constantly say they missed Daddy Mel and would be sad but not my little one. She was as happy as she ever was.
One day, I woke up in the middle of the night and needed to use the restroom. On my way there, I noticed there was light coming from downstairs and I heard someone talking and laughing. I was scared so I stayed at the top of the stairs listening. I heard my little girl saying "Oh, Guero that's not fair! Why will you only give him your foot and not me!". I started to walk real quietly down the stairs and noticed that the parrot had his foot extended like it was resting on something, this made my daughter giggle and clap. Then Guero started "dancing", he would walk up and down bobbing his head back and forth, something he would only do at my dad's request.
What I felt next was so overwhelming I ran back upstairs and buried my face in my pillow and cried my eyes out. Part of me was scared even though I knew that she was seeing and talking to my dad I also felt like I didn't want to intrude. I remember I fell asleep, I didn't go get her and didn't see her until morning. I was debating on what to tell her, I was afraid of what she was going to tell me she was seeing.
I finally got the nerve to talk to her a few days later. I asked her who she and Guero where playing with the other day. She looked at me and said "I don't know" so I let her be. It kept bugging me and I was constantly following her around the house and watching her every move. Finally, one day I asked her about it again and she said "he doesn't come anymore", I asked her "who?", and she replied "no one, can I go play now?" I never got a straight answer from her.
Guero stopped eating and about two months after my dad past away we found him dead in his cage. All 3 of my children cried non-stop for the parrot. I never really liked Guero, he was loud, mean and obnoxious but I still cry when I remember him.
To me, it was one more thing from my father that was gone.