WORDS LIKE LIGHT
Tuesday, September 20, 2022
At this time of year, caterpillars are starting to go through an amazing metamorphosis to change into butterflies, and I often wonder whether a somewhat similar kind of transformation is happening to me – and all of us – almost all the time. Every year across the earth, trillions of caterpillars undergo a complete transformation – a change so thorough that it literally remakes them into new creatures. A butterfly is not just a re-tooled caterpillar; it’s a completely new and different animal. As one writer said, it would be as if you dropped off a bicycle at the repair shop and when you came back, it had turned into a 747 jumbo jet. This marvelous rebirth will start happening soon all across New England, and it seems to me that something roughly analogous happens to all of us with amazing regularity. Life, perhaps, is a never-ending school where we are constantly learning and testing and growing and advancing – and completely transforming. Perhaps this kind of ‘school work’ happens every day, right in my ordinary and pleasingly old life – maybe as I prepare an omelet in the morning, or see sparrows floating somewhere, or just gaze out at the promising trees and sky. Maybe, like a good student in an excellent school, or like a caterpillar, I am becoming completely new, over and over again, but don’t realize it. After all, I have rarely stopped to notice and marvel at a caterpillar as it’s going through its metamorphosis, and, similarly, perhaps I’ve never been aware of the radical changes that are happening to me, and to life itself – always. Perhaps youthful 80-year-old student ‘butterflies’ have been bursting out on a daily basis at the good school at 44 Riverbend Drive – and I’ve completely missed it!
TRANSFORMING (about Bernice D, 61, Blessings, CT ) She loves the changes that choose her every day -- the constant and amazing mutations of her mind, the inspiring reshaping of strength caused by disappointments and sorrows, the way her powers of understanding so often seem transformed, even by leaves letting go or sunshine on the side of a house. A walk down the driveway redoes the cells in her body, and bringing the groceries in somehow reorganizes all of her past. When she needs a total remake, she just sincerely welcomes whatever’s happening, and the remodeling is instantly done.