Post Caterpillars

(Every now and then I get shocked by all the changes that have happened and I have this moment of panic- like it finally hits me that his is my life. With everything still very much in flux, it’s hard not to get caught up in the crazy, least for a moment or two.

Yesterday morning I woke up feeling pretty uncomfortable, so I tried to reason with it through my writing. Below is the outcome.Changes and transitions-the ever present theme in my life. My friend Steven says I’ve made a career out of this state of being.)


When we’re kids during early science lessons, we are taught that the caterpillar becomes a butterfly. It goes into a cocoon, hangs out in there for a little bit and it comes out bright and vibrant, with an ability to fly.  We are never exactly told what happens in there.  In reality, the digestive juices once used to process the caterpillar’s food end up eating the caterpillar itself. Scientists sometimes refer to this as a “partial death.” From there a new body, the butterfly body is built.

Partial death-I feel that way sometimes. There isn’t much of my psyche that feels attached to the life I had back in back east. With the distance, all my relationships have changed, including the one with myself. While I recognize I’m not the first time to pack up and go, and I’m aware I won’t be the last, I feel as though I’m taking it a lot harder than most. You know the start of the flight where the wheels lift off the tarmac and you feel totally weightless? I feel that way all the time. I’m white knuckled holding on to nothing that could save me if something were to go wrong thousands of feet off the ground, but I tell myself that I got this. I have a college degree and health insurance. I have a job that I can do and I clean up alright.  Gone are the days where I would sleep with dudes just for attention’s sake, or drink myself until daylight. I got this who adult thing. I’m stable.  

But I am I? With the highs feeling drug like and the lows like a car crash I can’t be sure.  In doing something entirely for myself I’ve created this bubble of isolation that people either can’t relate to or is too intricate to be worth getting to know.  I’m not sure if it’s fear or exhaustion or the mix of both but I know I’m starved for someone in this city to just get it and because I continue to play it off like it’s nothing, I keep attracting people into my life who move through the days effortlessly without thought or sense of heart. I can do this shot for shot and dance to some electropunk band that seems so popular here but what I need is a pub and an Irish man playing a mandolin. I need another lost soul wearing a Red Sox hat who knows why I had to get out and why I can’t go back, at least not yet.

Here I am. Walking around city that’s 10x bigger than the one I grew up in, 7 months, a thousand miles, and a million worlds away and looking the part but feeling like a beetle without it’s exoskeleton, or a jellyfish unequipped with the sting.

So here’s to all you caterpillars swimming in the sea of uncertainty for what feels like eternity. Here’s to all you somewhat thriving individuals who look like complete people but would expose all the cracks if someone looked in your eyes long enough to see them. You are the way that woodworker sees his unfinished project beautiful.  You are the slow simmer of your crock pot beautiful. You are the stretched conversation with your best friend because you need to keep them on the phone for  just 5 minutes longer beautiful.  You are still at the part where you are digesting yourself so don’t be mad that you are not yet a butterfly.


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