Tuesday, April 13, 2010

on display

first grade. i remember butterflies pinned to felt, grotesque underneath the greasy and smudged glass as we passed them around. we were told to be careful, not to drop the box and i couldn't for the life of six year old me figure out why. it wasn't like they were going to fly away.
that's where i learned about april following may with its showers and its flowers. rhymes and word association and other tricks that keep us afloat, bobbing along while we kick our feet and unintentionally bruise the fruit of each other. sometimes i wonder how exactly we do these things everyday. how we bounce around our own personal bubbles, smiling at and sometimes spitting on passersby. how we manage to live with pain and beauty and sometimes even swallow them at the same time.
sometimes i want to gnash my teeth in privileged frustration. my stress has merit, it is tangible and it is heavy and sharp and leaves marks. but it is the stress of someone who wants more. and believes it is possible.
it is the stress of someone who has every reason in the world to strive to be happy.
i remember being told once that you should not touch the wings of a butterfly because they will die. something about the oils on our skin being too heavy or just plain too much.
i'm afraid to touch her wings sometimes. i don't want to render them useless.


  1. how i understand this. my baby is 21 months old and i lay at night praying to God, if there is a God (are you there God, it's me margaret), to remember how he created me: unable to bear the possibility of raising my baby wrong. oil HEAVY on butterfly wings, the weight of a another's personality/disposition/readiness-for-the-world HEAVY on my mind. forget how i feel about "the real world" hurting him....ah. i'm a mess on the subject....

  2. You're such a good Mom - I always worried with you and look how you turned out (altho much of it is your own doing). Parenthood is a crapshoot - all we can do is what we think is our best - and then sit back with crossed fingers and prayers.
    You may restrain her a little, but you'll never damage her makes up for a lot of it. And there is an abundance here...she knows that.
    xxoo Mom

  3. I don't think you'll allow yourself to do that, Krista. You are too aware of that invisible line others cross. You will continue to be a wonderful mom, attuned to her every need and her every thought. Love to you!

  4. You are far too conscientious to pin her wings. A long time ago I read something that compared parenting to handling an orb of freshly blown glass that hadn't completely hardened yet. It is impossible not to leave a fingerprint or two but that is completely different than squeezing it with all your might, or allowing it to harden and then flinging it to the floor to shatter.

    Finn is in good hands with her parents. She is so loved. As always, I'm wowed by your word weaving, perspective, and photography. I completely adore Finn's sweet little face...i'm just totally smitten!

  5. Wow. Your words just left a bubble in my belly. Amazing post, Krista.

  6. God this is gorgeous... I have no other kind words to say that can phrase it any differently.

    Your writing still lifts up my heart, Krista. As it always has.

  7. There is something ethereal and other-world about your words. Lovely analogy.

  8. p.s. I just noticed up above this box: "use your kind words." SWEET!

  9. oh, krista. this: "bobbing along while we kick our feet and unintentionally bruise the fruit of each other" jumped out and squeezed my heart.

    And the line about swallowing the pain and the beauty together - it reminds me of the Buddhist practice of tonglon (I think it's called?). Of breathing in the pain of the world and breathing out the beauty - so we can empathize and also spread our own peace and beauty to others. I'm not Buddhist, so I may have got that a little wrong, but that's what I thought of.

    just gorgeous writing, as always.


  10. This is a beautiful post, Krista.
    Somehow I have a feeling that there is no way you, being the person you are, could ever render her delicate wings useless. You're helping them grow strong enough to soar. You're an amazing woman and an amazing mom.
    And yes, I can tell of this by reading your blog! ;)

  11. I want to write something about what you wrote on VU..but I'm not sure it's okay to leave it in your comments. Do you have an email or something you'd prefer? It's nothing about any details of anything, it's more just a description of how awesome you are, but I wanted to ask what you thought before I just left a message you weren't expecting. ~Susan

  12. It is those kind of worries from the loving heart that can move us towards being better people..but we have to let go of 'fear' and just embrace the change- was that preachy, I didn't mean to be. x0

  13. Wow.
    "i'm afraid to touch her wings sometimes. i don't want to render them useless"

    I really relate to that!

  14. This was beautiful, Krista. I love how you write. If you have a sec, read my post today. Then, get out of my brain. ;)

  15. Beautifully put. Where you been the last wee while?

  16. krista reading this a question came to me: who taught her how to be a mom? can i go there too please.

    i learn in quiet abiding silence. thank you for teaching.


use your kind words.