One of my daughter’s Aunties gave her a birthday gift that our little girl will not surely forget. With a mail-in form to order a few caterpillars, and the canopy to house the emerging butterflies, we had all we needed to complete a real life science experiment in our very own kitchen.
We watched as these caterpillars made themselves into cocoons, then crawl out ever so carefully, and then slowly stretch their wings in preparation for flight.
Our six year old was so diligent to be there, as any good mother would do, watching, caring for them, and spending her time coaxing them here and there in the canopy. When the time had come to release them, I watched her face showing confused emotion. She knew releasing them was giving them a longer life, one with having their own babies, experiencing the great outdoors and so on…however she wouldn’t be a part of that life, and that realization was difficult to resolve in the mind of a six year old.
I advised her, just open the canopy, they’ll just fly right out. But, caring for them as she did, she disagreed, and asked if she could remove them one by one, by hand, and then set them off into flight. I relented. She HAD put in the work for these little creatures, and if she wanted to take the time with each little one, who was I to deny her. She spoke so softly to encourage each one to crawl onto her hand, and when they did, we were able to capture a fantastic moment. I saw tenderness in her that I miss sometimes. As I see her with a perfectionist personality, complete with justice and order, she really does have a tender side, which loves very deeply and sincerely. I was taken aback. She allowed for a tender side of herself to show, and perhaps I just need to give her more opportunities to explore that sensitive side.
These little butterflies stayed on her hand for a good solid moment, enough to click a few great pictures, and then just like that they flew off to their new destination.
It was a teaching moment. We tend to attach ourselves to things or people in this life. Sometimes, it takes great patience to have relationship and the letting go to allow for another possible future can cut the heart like a knife. However sweet this moment in this little girl’s life, she found a life lesson in it all. Sometimes, letting go is difficult, but for the sake of another, a sacrifice of one’s desires, is exactly what will produce the most fruit.
Copyright 2010 Sahmatwork