I've been walking every morning for exercise (well MOST mornings) for a couple of weeks now. It's a great way to start my day and Lily (our dog) loves it too. Sometimes Jenna comes with me, although she probably won't for a while after our last walk. We walked about 3 miles, which apparently she didn't know we were going to do, and it was "too far", "too hot", and "too boring". If you've ever walked or done other exercise with your kid and they aren't happy, chances are you are gonna have a hard time being happy too. But something very important happened on our last walk together (Well hopefully not our last walk, just the last one we did together.)
We saw a butterfly. A dead one. It was laying on the ground near a road, where I assume it was hit by a car? I really have no idea how it died. It just did and was in perfect condition. We picked it up and weren't totally sure it was dead because it was so perfect and it's wings were moving a little with the breeze. But after it didn't fly away (normal butterfly behavior), we were pretty certain it was not alive.
Of COURSE Jenna wanted to keep it. I knew we had another mile and a half to walk. I knew the butterfy, being all delicate and stuff, would not fare well being carried by an 11 year old. I had the dog and really didn't feel like carrying it. I told her we'd leave it and if it was still there when we walked back by, we'd pick it up and take it home.
So we traipsed on (whine whine whine) and I motivated Jenna to keep moving so we could get back to get the butterfly. We eventually made it back to the butterfly, which was still very dead and right where we left him. (I assume it was a him. Could've been a girl I suppose.) So Jenna "gently" scooped him up and carried him the mile home.
He was hard to carry. Jenna had to cup her hands around him because the breeze kept catching his wings and moving them. With his tiny little feet touching her hand and the wings moving, that butterfly sure seemed alive a couple of times. But he wasn't. I eventually had to carry him some of the way, as Jenna got too "tired".
We made it home with Mr. Butterfly intact (mostly). Here's what he looks like. Jenna wants to mount him on her wall. I'm gonna have to Google how to do that .
Mr. Butterfly, found on our walk. Chillin' at the computer.
The next day on my walk, I was alone. No dog. No kid. I'm strolling along, minding my own business when a butterfly dive bombs me, swooping by me about an inch from my face. It scared me but not in a horrible way. Who's ever heard of a butterfly attack? Not me but I was pretty sure he was going to try to bite me. Once I got a safe distance away and realized he was just saying hi, I decided it was pretty cool. Two butterfly experiences in 24 hours.
Then something strange started to happen. I started to see butterflies everywhere. Driving in my car, they'd fly in front of me. Out walking, I'd see a bunch. Then I'd see them in my house. Everywhere I turned I'd see butterflies.
I mentioned this to Claire as we were driving day before yesterday. Did she think it was weird I kept seeing butterflies? She didn't say much but I saw her, out of the corner of my eye, tapping away on her phone.
She then turned to me me and said "Mom. The butterfly is a symbol for deep spiritual transformation!"
No way. How is that even possible? There is no way this butterfly has a more significant meaning for me. I mean, I've always liked butterflies but never in a million years did I think of them as a symbol of something more meaningful. Not even after reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar to my kids 700 times.
My mind was going CRAZY thinking about this. I had been in a cocoon for all these years! I was being transformed. I couldn't believe that I had never thought of this before.
It was almost like God bonked me over the head.
Maybe he did. Yeah. He definitely did.
Yesterday morning I started looking for a screen saver for my computer that would be a butterfly. Then I looked up butterfly information on the computer and learned there are almost 24,000 species of butterflies. I LOVED looking at all the pictures. I learned the butterflies can represent profound changes of the soul and spiritual transformation. Are you kidding me?! The very thing that I believe is happening in my life right now has a beautiful symbol associated with it?
Then I learned the butterfly has been used by Christians for a LONG time as a symbol of resurrection. You could have knocked me over with a feather. All these butterfly encounters? Coincidence? DEFINITELY NOT. Unless it's "butterfly season", there is no way the number of them I've seen in the past couple of days is normal. Just driving yesterday in the car, we saw no less than 15 butterflies fly near our car. In an hour.
So I've decided to adopt the butterfly as a symbol for my journey back to Christianity. ***Sometime soon I'll have a butterfly added as logo of sorts to my website. I am so excited to have a physical, beautiful representation of my journey. Here's a few more pictures of butterflies....in my house.
Open my drawer and first shirt I see?
Butterflies in the bathroom
I always paid more attention to the flowers.
Butterfly cookies at Wegman's
A very old "book" that belonged to my grandparents. Check this out.
The "book" stretches out
So many pretty butterflies
My new journal
My new screen saver
It's very cool to see butterflies every time I turn around. I feel like it's a sweet reminder of my journey and God saying "Hey. Don't forget about me all thoughout the day." I'll keep you posted on my butterfly sightings. May you see many butterflies in your life too! Peace.