“You say it’s your birthday! It’s my birthday tooooo!” ~The Beatles
Beau and I went to the butterfly house at the Pacific Science Center and I spent about an hour just ogling chrysalises and taking pictures of fluttering wings. I found out about Paper Kite Butterflies. First I was just enamored with how many big white and black butterflies there were, all fluttering together in lazy flocks. I even took a selfie with one. Then, while looking at all the pupas I gasped at some shiny bright metallic gold chrysalises. I had never seen anything like them! I took a picture. On the way home I looked at the name of the pupas in the picture, then looked up their butterflies on google. They were the same black and white butterflies!
Fast forward to later when we had all had some cinnamon roll birthday cake, Harry brought a christmas present from my mom I hadn’t opened the packaging too. A little butterfly kite!
I can’t help but see some significance. Birthdays remind me of change and growth. I’ve felt a little bit chrysalisish…perhaps even caterpillarish lately. (The irony of my wearing a striped shirt just like the striped caterpillars of the kite butterfly was not lost on me.) More and more I realize that we are eternally going through different stages of growth all throughout our lives. We can even be simultaneously sprouting wings as we are still working on a cocoon. It never really ends. The trick is finding beauty in every stage. I think getting older is helping me see how. The things that mattered so much to 20 year old me seem trivial now. I’m glad to think that things that make me sad today will someday have some time and wisdom between me and them. I’ve learned that loneliness is time to reflect and work on self care, humility is a step into reality, and failure is fuel for courage.
But I wouldn’t have known these things if I’d been flying high as a kite all through the years. And I won’t be able to go deeper and learn more if I don’t expect and welcome change now and in the future. Even the coloring of the butterflies means something to me. When everything is going well life seems to be black and white, you think you can see clearly and make decisions and create ideas based out of naivety and jadedness. But truth and strength come from adversity. Life doesn’t have easy answers, and the world needs to be seen from different hues.
Perhaps the butterflies were trying to show me that while difficult to shed one’s exoskeleton and become something new, it can be a brilliantly golden time. Ones own poetry and glittering soul are shown when the pain of growth happens.
image from AZcentral.com
I’ve been loving these lyrics from La La Land’s The fools who dream:
“A bit of madness is key
to give us to color to see
Who knows where it will lead us?
And that’s why they need us
So bring on the rebels
The ripples from pebbles
The painters, and poets, and plays
And here’s to the fools who dream
Crazy, as they may seem
Here’s to the hearts that break
Here’s to the mess we make”