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Walk of life: freeing the butterfly

Over the summer, when the weather is warm we have the house open. In England where we live there are no screens on windows or doors and so the breeze and all it brings sometimes comes in. Mostly that means sunshine, sometimes rain, and often bumble bees. We get huge bees that are just shy of golf ball sized, really they would just fit in a tablespoon, and they are very silly. We have to rescue them as they get stuck in the kitchen’s glass conservatory roof. Once a blackbird came in and we simply said – ‘silly Mr. Blackbird, can you go back outside?’ and he did. That was a relief! Sometimes a butterfly comes in and they are the hardest to rescue because you have to be so careful not to damage their wings.

This one came in and we rescued it. My son asked if he could set it free. He has a beautiful reverence for life and I am honoured to spend time with him. He didn’t plan this and he thought I was taking a still photo, not a video. He gave me permission to post this (in return for some Pokemon cards).

I come back to it and watch it from time to time, to remind myself of many things:

  • The various glass jars that trap us within our lives and within the confines of society – from inhibitions to doubts to feeling pressured into ‘being‘ something or someone – are only glass and when you take off the lid, you can leave them behind.
  • Both the compassion that exists in the world and the beauty of children are wonderful. I am reminded that I should work to keep that always, no matter how old I may get on the outside.
  • I watch it to remind me that we are privileged to have a choice: stay in the jar, or look outside and fly.

There, there, Mr. Butterfly.

You can go if you want, or you can stay;

your choice


(Thank you to my son for letting me post this.)

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