As I sat in the warm sunshine one day, I watched a delicate blue butterfly flit from flower to flower, followed by an orange and black Monarch and then a lilting white creature with green-marbled wings. The three friends floated from zinnias to hyacinths and daisies, landing on my butterfly bush near the fence where they feasted on sweet flower nectar.
“I would like to be as carefree as you,” I said to the friends.
“We haven’t always been this way,” replied Blue. “First we were tiny eggs, then caterpillars inching our way through life.”
“I know it must have taken great energy for you to create the fragile, but durable chrysalis protection you lived in for a time in your early life.”
“The slumber was delicious,” said Blue, “and a much deserved rest after the energy it took to harbor ourselves.”
“But, after a time, the change we experienced! The realization that we were different—not like our beginnings, but yet still the same,” said Marble
“It must have been a struggle to break free of the protection you created for yourself,” I said.
“It had become a prison,” said Monarch. “The twisting, and pressing. The pushing and struggle to discard our shackles. What a lot of work.”
“You must feel very tired,” I suggested.
“Oh, but look what we’ve become,” said Blue. “The first time I took flight. Such a feeling of exhilaration!”
“What a sense of freedom it gave,” said Marble.
“But we wouldn’t have appreciated it had we not known confinement first,” said Monarch.
“And now we are thankful for our reward,” said Blue. “I am grateful for the process of hard work, incubation, trials and perseverance.”
“And now you have gifts you can enjoy, plus you bring pleasure to those who see you.”
The friends darted off to another flower bed.