The Butterfly is Supposed to Struggle

2017-11-19 13.46.01

Maya Angelou said, “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” No one likes to struggle because the pain, of any kind, does not feel good. In fact, many of us probably spend our entire lives seeking to struggle less. To reduce the chances of pain and heartache in our lives, of embarrassment and of shame.

The only problem with this is that the butterfly is supposed to struggle. It is how it achieves its beauty in the first place. The butterfly’s struggle to push its way through the tiny opening of the cocoon pushes the fluid out of its body and into its wings. Without this struggle, the butterfly will never, ever fly.

To my beautiful butterflies out there, don’t try to circumvent the struggle, don’t bypass the pain or override the alarm. Let what needs to happen, happen and listen to what it has to teach you because the struggle is necessary for the growth. The struggle is good if you want to fly.

bitmoji478888671

Advertisements

When Hearts Break

moleskin-notebook-and-coffee-writing

Deafening silence

and the torture

Of stillness

The quiet awe

Of when hearts break

Shattering glass

With no sound

Just pieces of thought matter

And stains of emotions

Smeared

No one will look up

Because pain has no sound

No warning

Except to pen a tear

The silent scribble

Of the scribe

When hearts break

In crowded rooms

To Be Real

the-velveteen-rabbit-by-margery-williams2

Real isn’t how you are made,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.’

‘Does it hurt?’ asked the Rabbit.

‘Sometimes,’ said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. ‘When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.’

‘Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,’ he asked, ‘or bit by bit?’

‘It doesn’t happen all at once,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.

“The Velveteen Rabbit,” also called “How Toys Become Real,” is a children’s novel written by Margery Williams and illustrated by William Nicholson. First published in 1922, the story was Williams’ first and most popular children’s book. If you’ve never read it before, the story is about the journey of a toy velveteen rabbit learning about love and what it means to become real.”

*******

People talk a lot about realness today, but few people understand what it means to really be real. The phrase “Keep It Real” is prominent, yet many people are not willing to hurt for it.

“He longed to become Real, to know what it felt like; and yet the idea of growing shabby and losing his eyes and whiskers was rather sad. He wished that he could become it without these.”

Why is wisdom measured by old age? I suppose its because by the time your hair is gray and your knees buckle and you can’t walk as far, by then you’ve gone through enough heartache to know real. You see, you’ll never be real without going through the furnace of affliction. Yes, diamonds are beautiful, but they had to go through much pressure to get that way. The truth is that we learn early on to hate ourselves because we learn to fight against disappointment, to buck against pain, and to despise trial. We learn not to rejoice in the bad but to complain about it, never once considering that such pain is reaping strength in our favor. As a result, we end up being fake most of the time because we’re not strong enough to be weak.

“Of what use was it to be loved and lose one’s beauty and become Real if it all ended like this? And a tear, a real tear, trickled down his little shabby velvet nose and fell to the ground.”

This. This most painful, most humbling of a moment. Now, you’re real.

The Velveteen Rabbit

A Lifetime

“Lifetime relationships are a bit more difficult to let go of. When a parent, child, or spouse is involved, the wounds are very deep. When the end of a lifetime relationship comes, you may feel that you would be better off dead. The pain seems to grow, the memories linger, a part of your life is dying. You relive every painful moment in an attempt to understand. Your job is not to understand. Your job is to accept. Lifetime relationships  teach you lifetime lessons; those things you must  build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. They are the most difficult lessons to learn, the most painful to accept; yet these are the things you need in order to grow. When you are facing a separation of the end of a lifetime relationship, the key is to find the lesson; love the person anyway; move on and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships. A new life begins when a part of life ends.”- Jasheem Wilson

Betrayal

What happened when you read the title of this post? Did you hearken on a definition, or did your mind replay the events of the past?

They say betrayal is something people do to the ones they love. How profoundly interesting a thought. The TV show The Strain, for instance, shows how the infected return to murder their loved ones first. And in the history of the relationships we’ve had throughout our lives, chances are its the closest love that got us. People who admire our work are those who have a history of hating us for the very work they wish belonged to them. Not all admirers but those who secretly hate when we improve. Like the song says, “Smiling in yo face, all the time wanna take yo place, them back stabbers.” They say some do it with a bitter look. Some a flattering word, and others a sweet kiss. And in the words of Dennis Haysbert (the All State Guy) in a clip from the movie Love and Basketball,  the most bold is right at your front door.

Deception.

It comes in many different shapes, sizes, and motives, and often enters under the banner of love. A smile, a wave, or a joke or two that happens as the knives enter your lower torso. Since hate transforms itself into an angel of light, the love we have for these people makes for an invisible wound; a wound that is not instant thanks to our blindness but that appears later. Dripping from holes unnoticed by the sister you called friend, or the brother you thought loyal. The pain has no calendar to which it wishes to disappear into, and is not interested in evaporating so that you have the privilege of time, in which you decide when to trust again. Not likely. Know that the pain will  sit there long enough for you to put up the proper walls that only true love can tear down. As for trust, it is a mirror that only time can restore. Yes, betrayal, it is a broken bone of trust capitalizing on the scars already on our backs.

So what’s the good news? What’s encouraging about this post? Well, nothing. Nothing except that while Betrayal shows up often, it really only has one job.

To make you stronger.