Posts Tagged ‘transformation’

The Neighbor is moving.  The “For Sale” sign went up yesterday.  Not only is the Neighbor moving, she is getting married.  Big change.

I moved to this neighborhood in 1999.  With child in arms I stood in the backyard and listened to the wind.  The wind is different here, I liked it.  We bought.

Not long after, I got to know the Neighbor when I walked over with just-baked chocolate chip cookies for her daughter, who had recently had wisdom teeth extracted.  I pointed out the cookies were still gooey, the Neighbor said she liked them that way. I knew we could be friends.

Just months after moving here, the Neighbor’s world fell into unanticipated divorce.  A steady and caring woman, she did her best.  She survived and thrived, raised her children well.  There are few women so able.

On October 12, the Neighbor is marrying the Handyman, a fellow of fine stature and character.  Both of them born and raised here, their union does this small town proud.  Heart and soul.

From my worldview, my family landed in this neck of the woods in part to allow me the grace of an acquaintance such as hers.  At no time during my long marriage was my spouse as good a friend to me as the Neighbor.  And as my own marriage ended and divorce turned dark, the Neighbor still walks each step with me.

The strange and hilarious moments we have shared are priceless Neighbor,  I will always be grateful.  And I am grateful to the Handyman, who in marrying the Neighbor, is only moving her one mile to the north.  He got lucky. I did too.

The Neighbor is moving.  After many years, the Neighbor is moving in a big way.  Hers is a good story, deep with loss and gain.  The best kind of life, the best kind of woman.

“For Sale,” I sure hope someone nice moves in.

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Mr. Saturday Night is no longer —  I miss him already.

Mr. Saturday Night was an adventurous monarch caterpillar given to escapist feats. Placed in a jar for his own protection against winged predators, he had a penchant for wriggling out air holes and heading on down the highway, or at least the end of the shelf.

Big, striped, and saucy, that boy had a way about him.   Nobody could put down a milkweed leaf like he could.

And he is gone.

Yesterday, after hanging upside down for about a day, he sloughed his skin and disappeared into a jade-green chrysalis about one-third the size of his formerly formidable caterpillar form.

The root meaning of metaphor is to transfer, carry over or across.  Metamorphosis is to change, or transform.  Metamorphosis has always been a florid metaphor for human transformation.

We all know the story of the caterpillar and the chrysalis –  monarch butterflies are beloved for their beauty, their shape-shifting, and their migratory bent.  To me, they represent a life-long interest.  When young myself, I witnessed the same journey I now see again in Mr. Saturday Night and five of his closest friends.

Everyone sees what they will.  After years of troubling divorce and continuing instability, the permanence of the change in Mr. Saturday Night – his reduction to goo,  his sturdy reliance on unshakeable instinct to lead him forward – leave a deep impression on me.

Prior form is utterly gone – we have the shed skin to prove it.  Yet he survives, interior, contained, and changing.  His instinct, our faith,  he needs only to endure and follow his path to the sky.

At their age, my children are saddened by the disappearance of these beautiful caterpillars, they wonder at the change – and wait to see if nature holds good on the promise.  I do too.

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