My 5 year old daughter, Grace, had on her brave little smile as her new babies quickly flew away to freedom. In the previous weeks, we had watched, with much patience & excitement as 4 little caterpillars had turned into butterflies before our eyes. We had witnessed a miracle!
Grace described her feelings well when we let them go. Her mind agreed as her mouth said the words…, “I know my butterflies will be happier in their new home…and I know I’m making the world a more beautiful place.” The pictures show that she was very happy, but when we returned home her heart told a different story. She looked at me & said, “I’m just filled up with sad.” I reminded her that was the plan the whole time…she new from the start that we would be letting them go when they turned into butterflies. Her response, “I know…but I didn’t know it was going to be so great.” My heart broke for her. Not only that…IT WAS ALL MY FAULT! I’m the one who ordered the caterpillar’s in the first place!!!
So when she wasn’t paying attention, I put her little butterfly house away. My thought…If she doesn’t think about it, maybe she won’t be so sad. Well…the next day she asked where her butterfly house was. I stopped in my tracks & reluctantly pulled it out of my secret hiding place…complete with the empty cocoons & the one that never emerged from it’s chrysalis. She only looked at it, smiled…and then set it where she plans on it staying until I fork out the $ to buy her some more caterpillars. AND she didn’t hesitate to remind me that she’d prefer that I buy EIGHT caterpillars next time! 🙂
I learned something about myself that day. Doesn’t it seem that there will come a day that you would quit learning NEW things about yourself? I learned that the way I have dealt with things that are unpleasant in my life has been to just hide them away…deciding to forget about them…as if they never even happened.
Well, you can only live in your happy world so long before the myriad of things you have tucked away start poking holes in the make believe world that you have created. If there is strong emotion(pain, sadness, anger) that means you’re not finished dealing with it. Telling yourself, “that didn’t really hurt”…is not the same thing as finding the source of your pain & asking God to heal it…and He WILL.
What I learned from my child? Give yourself permission to feel. Each stage of your life will have it’s own joys. Feel happy…and keep moving forward! Each stage of your life will have it’s sorrows as well. Feel sad…and keep moving forward! Embrace & enjoy each moment. Remembering to breathe in each new & wonderful experience to come, because it won’t be long & they will become your richest memories.
When I grow up, I want to be like Grace 🙂