Spiritual Sunday -
People often use the life cycle of a butterfly as a metaphor to explain how we grow and change.
- A small caterpillar pops out of a tiny egg and grows into a large caterpillar eventually stopping all that it is doing and turning itself into a chrysalis where it privately goes through a complete change physically and comes out of the chrysalis a new beautiful butterfly.
I have never related to this because I don't see that one big change that made me beautiful and accepted by others and I don't feel that things are this simple. I see life much more like the life cycle of a dragonfly...
Dragonflies start out their lives underwater and do not look anything like their final dragonfly form. Here's a few different dragonfly larvae forms:
This larval development can take 1-2 years to finally complete and during this time they go through the moulting process 5-14 times.
This is a great example of what it is like to grow up - we experience the awkward changes over and over as we go through childhood and adolescents.
Eventually we head into our adult world which is very different than the world of our childhood - like the dragonfly we must enter a totally different environment. The young dragonfly come out of the water and molt again to live in a world outside the water.
Unlike butterflies, dragonflies don't go through a pupal stage where they completely melt and get reformed. Instead, dragonflies have been working on developing themselves all along so they evolve and transform! This process into an adult dragonfly doesn't just happen either. The dragonfly doesn't just pop out all pretty and perfect. This transformation is also a slow process where they dragonfly has to take time to become stronger and reach full stunning beauty.
We take time to become the people we are becoming and it is a long and challenging process. Like the young dragonfly we don't look anything like our adult selves and even when we become adults it takes time before we are finally a strong, amazing, and stunning being!
I know that life is challenging for all creatures and for some the butterfly metaphors make the most sense to them, but for me - I relate to the life of a dragonfly.
I have never really fit in and I have gone through so many of my own transformations as I discover more about myself, learn more, and grow. As I have gotten older and more mature I've realized that I no longer need to survive in my old skin/environments... and I made a big transformation. It wasn't easy and it didn't happen all at once. I am still becoming stronger and enhancing my beauty!