Swampwaders are not the most graceful flyers, and alongside his peers Bree can look a little less graceful. We can say it doesn’t matter because the flight is good, but to Bree it does matter, and that is a significant hurdle to overcome.

Swampwaders are covered in reeds and looping shapes to help them blend in. It is highly effective camouflage and they thrive in the lowland swamps and bogs. But up here in the mountains, in the high winds and bright sunlight, Bree must look and feel different to the others, and that holds him back. In contrast, many of the other students think his adornments rather beautiful, and consider themselves plain in comparison.

Kind words alone will not change how Bree sees himself. He must discover his own self-worth (whatever that means to him) by doing and discovering, by finding what drives him. One day something will free Bree of his shackles and he’ll fly away, still the same flurry of reeds and vines, but he’ll feel wonderful doing it.

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