Beauty In Butterflies
The cover to this blog post is from late last year, September 6 2020 to be exact.
On this day, we were camping at Kelley’s Island State Park in Kelley’s Island, Ohio watching the sunrise.
This is our yearly tradition. We have switched up between Kelley’s Island or Put-In-Bay each year for the last 5 years for our annual Labor Day camping trip. Kelley’s is hands down our favorite location, and this year was no different.
We have taken annual sunrise photos each year. We love waking up early and listening to the lake water hit the island rocks, as we sit there and take in the beauty of a new day.
This year in particular was really special to me, but at the same time it was also really difficult. As we sat watching the sunrise this day, I remember feeling hopeful that this could be our last year just the two of us. Hopeful that next year might include a little one..
I also remember feeling a little sad and lost this morning too. As my husband was suffering severe neck pain at this point and would ‘unknowingly at this time’ be having a tumor removed from his spinal cord a month later, he was in a lot of pain during our 2020 camping adventure.
There were so many beautiful reminders for us this weekend.
Regardless of the pain Josh was experiencing, he managed to make the most of our special time and our camping trip was another wonderful memory that will forever be added to our lives.
With 2020 being such an odd year, I remember we were determined to make our camping trip feel as normal as possible! We wanted and needed to escape the stresses of life that we were navigating during this time
And our annual camping trip is just what we needed to give us the strength to get through the bumps of what the end of the year 2020 would bring us.
I will never forget one particular experience in specific at this years camping trip.
This same morning, the morning I took this sunrise picture, I got to release a monarch butterfly.
It was incredibly special to me so next I will try my best to put into words why.
There were park rangers hosting a “Butterfly Presentation” this specific day. A few hours after the above sunrise picture was taken, Josh and I walked around the park pavilion reading some info on the butterflies. I quickly noticed that there was a cage filled with tagged monarch butterflies near the end of the table. Me being interested (and nosy), I asked the woman standing behind the table, “What are the butterflies doing in there?”.. She informed us that the monarchs in the cage are all tagged on their wing and then they are released. They then see which ones make it all the way to one of their locations in Mexico. She explained to us that in a previous year, how they had 3 of the tagged butterflies make it on the journey to the Mexico destination all the way from Kelley’s Island.
I was so interested in this! How could such a tiny little creature with delicate little wings make it from a tiny little island in Ohio, all the way over the seas to MEXICO? I was honestly amazed. It was at that point that I realized how amazing these little creatures are. I had such a new respect for monarch butterflies.
This whole butterfly experience allowed me to see my life and experiences in a new perspective.
Sometimes in life, we are “tagged” by God. It can sometimes make us feel caged up, just like the butterflies. Not understanding why we are chosen to experience some of the difficult paths that we are handed, we must accept it and have hope that we will make it through. Just as the butterflies were caged together, surrounded by one another, looking from the outside in, they seemed caged and suffocated. I have often felt caged, alone, and suffocated by the experience of infertility even when I was not alone and there were clearly so many others around me supporting me and going through similar experiences. But once the butterflies are “chosen”, they are removed from the cage and released. God does that for us. He puts certain things into our path in order to teach us things. And at HIs specific and appointed time, He releases us. With strength and determination, persistence and hard work, we too will make it to our “Mexico” if we don’t give up.
I mentioned at the beginning of this post that during this season of life I often find myself very happy, but often too, I feel sad. I learned that it is okay to feel this way.
It was and is okay to feel two opposite emotions at once. There is no rule that says we need to be smiling all the time in order to be happy. And sometimes when we are smiling, we might be feeling sad inside. Whatever your emotions are, EXPERIENCE THEM. Let them out. Cry. Laugh. Pout. Whatever you feel, feel it fully. But don’t hold it inside. Make sure you are opening up to people around you to support you and help you through your tough time.
Sometimes experiencing many emotions at once is how we can recognize things about ourselves.
If you too are experiencing infertility, loss, hurt, or any other type of pain; know that IT IS TEMPORARY.
The pain you are experiencing now will not compare to the JOY that is to come. Romans 8:18
I so wish that I would have had Josh take a picture of me with the butterfly that day.. But, I am also happy that he didn’t because it’s almost as if I remember it more because the moment was so special. I was so present in that moment because I didn’t have any distractions.. I wasn’t worried about my phone, I simply recognized the beauty of that moment for what it was and God really spoke to me that day.
That alone is a reminder that God is speaking to us all the time! We just need to look for Him. His reminder of the butterfly release that day reminded me of the beauty that is to come.. I will continue to cling on to HOPE for the future.
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” —Jeremiah 29:11
I hope my experience brings you hope and encouragement.
God’s beauty is all around us. Make sure you are looking for it.
Candidly, Cady ♥