A Time to Hide and a Time to Soar With the Butterflies
I see butterflies. Every day when I go on my morning walk, I see them. Sometimes a single white or yellow one, and sometimes two or three at a time. Occasionally, I’ll see swarms. Often, a single monarch or painted lady will cross my path as if to say “you’re going the right way. Keep going.”
For years I hid. Being an introvert is a handy excuse. But as I learn and grow, I realize I’ve used it as an excuse to be ‘less than” for too long. In reality, introversion isn’t a complete lack of desire to be around people. It’s more of a need to take people in smaller doses unless they’re the ones who truly fit me. With those people, I can spend hours or even days. If I do need to revert for a bit, I can do it without fuss or fanfare because they understand. Sometimes, all I need to do is sit back and listen while others carry the conversation.
I’ve learned hiding isn’t really a bad thing. There’s a time to hide; to wait; to rest. There’s also a time to spread my wings, show off their beautiful colors, and soar through life with wild abandon. Life isn’t an either/or proposition. It’s about choosing what and where and when. I think I had to go deep into my waiting place to figure that out.
Spreading My Wings
As my life expands and grows, I’m seeing more butterflies. Or maybe I’m just noticing them more the way you notice all the cars on the road like yours when you buy a new one. Now that I’m a butterfly myself, I notice them, and interestingly enough, they seem to notice me as well.
I suspect some see me as a bit of an oddball. When I walk in the morning, I talk to the ravens, the doves, the lizards, the dogs, the occasional curious cat, and of course, the butterflies. If it flies walks or crawls, I’m likely to strike up a conversation, or at least say hello. I have to believe some of them even reply in their own unique way.
The butterflies swoop and dance in the air around me. The lizards scoot out of their hiding places, letting me know they’re out and about. A kitten walks over and throws himself on the sidewalk, belly up in an age old demand. Even the dogs who used to leap at their fences aggressively now give a soft ruff as if to say: “good morning. Nice to see you out and about this fine day.” They might even miss me on the rare morning I don’t pass by.
Creativity and Swarms of Butterflies
Some days, I think the number of butterflies I see is an indication of how my day will unfold. When I see one or two, the day tends to be slower and more introspective. When I see swarms or groups of four or five, I’ll accomplish a lot, and my creativity will be high. Before you ask, I haven’t actually tested this theory, but you’d better believe I’ll be more conscious of it now.
The funny thing about writing (or typing) something is it creates a kind of file folder in my brain. Once written, I can more easily access it for future reference. When similar thoughts arise, I can pull out all my notes and compare them; check my theories and form new ones.
Writing has long been my healer, decision maker, sounding board, and therapist. But in order for it to work optimally, I had to learn to shut off the analytical part of my brain that wants to dive in and solve a problem with little or no evidence. It wants to guide my fingers and form the words. I’ve learned it isn’t my brain’s job to do that.
Answers come from deep within; a place where analysis doesn’t go. It comes from my heart and my subconscious. Most of my writing these days occurs independently from my brain. In fact, when my brain starts to intrude, I’ll take a break until it settles back into whatever bone it was chewing on before it tried to interfere with a process where it doesn’t belong. Its chance comes when I edit but not when I create.
Creating From the Heart vs. the Mind
How many other creatives let their hearts guide them? Allow something intangible and untouchable to form their art? Talking to other writers, some hold rigidly to a plan and woe be to the fingers which try to deviate from the plan. The very idea makes me shrivel and withdraw. Those folks can’t shut off part of their brain like I do. Perhaps they’re more focused and finish things faster than I do. I’ll never really know.
All I know is what works for me and the butterflies. Watching them, I see no pattern or plan. They flit from place to place, riding the air currents and simply loving being exactly where they are. They don’t know from rigid plans or schedules. Like me, they simply let themselves be.
Enjoying the Journey
Perhaps that shared sense of Being is what draws me to the butterflies. We both know we’ll get wherever we’re meant to go eventually, but the adventure is in the path we take. If we planned rigidly, we’d miss some amazing experiences along the way, even if doing so would get us from point A to point B faster.
Is the point to get there faster? Maybe for some. For me, it’s truly the journey. Sure, there are things I’d like to achieve, or wish I’d achieved already. But by taking the long way around, those achievements will be enhanced by the experiences I have on my slower, less rigid journey.
Still, I listen to some of those with rigid plans because within their rigidity are nuggets of wisdom I can use without following their overly structured ways. Perhaps they’ve even showed me how to notice the butterflies with their single-minded focus?
Taking Time Out of Each Day for Gratitude
My gratitudes today are:
- I’m grateful for my writing and all the worlds it’s opened to me.
- I’m grateful for learning to disengage from my analytical side. There’s a time and a place for it, but it needs to step aside when it’s my creative side’s turn.
- I’m grateful for the flow of words from my fingers. It goes more smoothly these days, after pounding out so many in the last few years. I’d even go so far as to say it’s become a habit.
- I’m grateful for a flexible schedule. Some days, I need to stay out of the world and be alone with my words. These days, it’s no longer a luxury, but a lifestyle.
- I’m grateful for abundance; inspiration, motivation, creativity, love, life, friendship, joy, music, health, humor, peace, harmony, balance, philanthropy, and prosperity.
Love and Light
About the Author
Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, ghostwriter, and an advocate for cats and mental health. Sheri believes in the Laws of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward