Wednesday, June 15, 2011

When a Butterfly is Just a Butterfly, and When A Butterfly is Not

I think of her all the time, you know. She is the undercurrent of my every thought, each in and out breath. She is woven in the fabric of every brainwave, she colors my speech even when I don't speak her name.

But I look for her too. As though I might know her, or recognize her outside of my one day of memory. Could that be her, that lazy, lumbering bumblebee buzzing and bobbing near my face? Or the butterfly, flitting and darting overhead along the way on our walk? Is that her, the deer in the cemetery, watching me as I run down the street? Maybe that's her, the flower that opens at dusk each night.

I know better, though. The bee, the butterfly, the deer and the flower, they are all just what they are. Earlier, the butterfly was a caterpillar wriggling and inching along the ground, and the bee is heavy with pollen from an afternoon of gathering. The deer, he's just a curious, shy creature who's somehow found himself living in the city, albeit in the most peaceful and woods-like spot. That flower's been opening since before I was born.  These creatures are simply creatures, not here for any other reason than to be here.

I wish I could believe otherwise.

But then. I think of her constantly. As though my thinking and wondering and wishing could make her be with me, in our family as a girl instead of the memory of a baby.  And maybe since the bee, and the butterfly, and the deer and the flower give me pause before realizing they just are what they are, maybe she is there.


  1. I want to believe Lucia comes as something, but I don't know what. I asked my husband if we could decide on a sign before we die, just so we know. There are no questions of is that him or not. I know what you mean that Calla is the undercurrent of everything. Lucia is my undercurrent. She is my rhythm. The line I sign on. It doesn't stop me from wanting to know her flesh and body. That I never will breaks my heart daily. Thinking of you and the bird, the deer and the bee, and your little Calla. xo

  2. I think we all want a sign...something tangible to remember our lost ones...but especially those that we never had a lot of time to know. If there is something tangible, it gives a sense of realness...closeness. I hope you find the sign you are looking for when remembering your sweet Calla.

  3. Oh yes. I know, I just know. Beautiful post.

  4. Yes, yes, this exactly. I see Florence everywhere, but at the same time I know it can't be her, but maybe it could be, just a little?

  5. There are times a cardinal makes me think of Henry, and other rarer, times when it feels like him. The two times I have felt him around me most strongly there was no sign, just a presence.

    I believe there is a difference between looking for signs and making associations, and the occasional sighting/feeling. The latter are very rare, but I think very real.

  6. I really identify with this post. I like this. She lives in the pause. That's a nice way to put it.

    I see Margot in the water, where we spread her ashes, but no where else. I wish I could find her in other places too, but my mind only allows my imagination to run so far.

    The other day at the shop this damn morning dove kept hovering around, flying in and out of the driveway, cooing and cawking as if its life depended on it. It kept coming back, hour after hour, and then I finally gave in and said hello. Hey Margot. And then I snickered to myself for believing this dove was her. I imagine these sort of little teases will be the best I get as time moves forward.