It all started at a gift shop in the Lowcountry. A dear friend who was caring for our fur-child in my absence sent me several photos, letting me know she was doing just fine. I proudly showed off their grandcat to my parents. “What’s that?” my Dad asked pointing to my friend’s tattoo. The word grace hovering above a redbird feather.
I explained that my friend associates cardinal visits with departed loved ones stopping by. Not sold by metaphysics, my dad cracked a questionable smile. “Whether it’s true or not, people need this, Dad,” I said. He agreed.
This felt like a good time to mention the yellow butterflies.
The first time I saw one take flight, I was standing at my kitchen window overlooking my backyard garden before I left for South Carolina. Hopping from bloom to bloom was the brightest butterfly I’d ever seen. This stood out to me, having never noticed another like it.
When we arrived in Hilton Head, I saw them everywhere – near the marina, hovering by the pool, and flying along on our bike rides.
My mother had overheard our conversation and gotten teary. I looked to my dad for answers and learned she’d been seeing them, too. “And you remember the room at your grandparents’ house,” he continued. “The one with the yellow chairs they called The Butterfly Room.”
Aha! Of course.
I looked up yellow butterflies, just to see what wisdom (ha) the internet could offer.
- To some Native American tribes, the yellow butterfly brings guidance and is a sign of hope.
- Some Irish lore says that yellow butterflies are indicators of departed souls who are resting peacefully in the after life.
- A yellow butterfly represents joy and creativity. And in many cultures, new life.
New life. REBIRTH.
Stumbling through a parade of clicks in a way only Google can offer, I came across a video of a caterpillar’s transformation. The metaphors were obvious:
Going through a transformative experience can put you in a dark, suffocating place – much like a caterpillar in a cocoon. And then there’s a period of time where there’s a painful struggle to free yourself of the darkness. Finally, the transformation is complete and there’s a beautiful new life ahead.
I’m currently writing from my own cocoon, but very much looking forward to the day where my wings will sprout and I’ll feel the freedom to take flight.