Yesterday I was sitting out on the patio watching my two-year-old, Louisa, splash around in her plastic swimming pool. You know the one: blue with multi colored, bug-eyed underwater creatures staring up at you through the leaf-laden water? It’s amazing the abandon with which such a small child slips and slides, jumps and splashes, never worrying that a little leaf may stick to her butt or that she will slip and fall too hard. With unabashed wildness she flung her limbs as I watched the water spray up in the air and fall like fairy dust all around this beautiful iridescent skinned sprite.
Just then my wide camera focus, narrowed as my daughter honed in on a small buzzing creature flipped upside down in the wakes. The water settled to a calm placid lake as Lou crept up on the tiny insect struggling for its life. My instinct as a mama bear was to leap in between my little one and the deadly stinging monster, but something in that moment made me stop…and watch…and be still.
I looked at the amusement and absolute unbridled joy on my daughter’s face. I then looked inside my constricted, anxious self and chose to exhale…and smile. She giggled as she pushed the water around the little helper bee and now I felt that urge to help the little guy out, but again, I inhaled …and waited …and smiled.
Louisa was now concerned for the struggling little exoskeleton as well. I encouraged her to find a way to help if that is what she felt. She pointed to an empty cinnamon container sitting in the overgrown grass outside of the pool and motioned for me to assist. I did and she filled the shaker with water. Sliding up on the bee, she began dowsing it as she poured water from the little holes in the top of the once spicy abode.
“Come on bubas,” she cheered him on with her own pet name.
The anthropod gasped and struggled to breathe (I imagine) through the enormous droplets. She had high hopes for the little guy. She saw his infinite potential as pollinator to the greatest of flowers and wanted him to be able to live out his bee mission (or wait, was that me…hmmmm?). Lou was slightly disheartened. I was devastated!
I encouraged her to try something else. She picked up a rectangular shaped container resembling a kitty litter box (okay… it was a kitty litter box, but we got it at Goodwill and I didn’t realize it until we got home and had already spent many hours filling it up with “bubble water” to play in on our small upstairs apartment patio…pre grassy yard with big plastic pool). So this bubble keeper quickly became a wave maker as Lou scooped and pushed the water trying to get our little hero to climb onto the rim of the poop box. Again she was at a loss. The bee could not seem to jump, fly or climb the thick edge to save its own life. There was, however, forward progress made as massive waves flipped the bee over so he could now doggie paddling his six legs and seemed, even for a bee, a little more hopeful. There was a lightness to his stroke, if I do say so myself. The bee seemed to realize at this point that there were other things to grab hold of around him. It’s like his tiny bee brain woke up. Lou was determined. She would provide the instrument for this little guy to grab on to.
This time getting out of the pool herself to find a lifesaver, Lou picked up a gardening tool with three prongs for turning over dirt. I would’ve chosen a shovel myself, but that’s beside the point. As she carried it over to what seemed would be the bee’s watery grave, she suddenly let out a huge yelp and threw the tool in the air grabbing her hand in pain. This time I ran to my baby bear’s side (a mother can only take so much) to see what this normally tough skinned kid was crying about.
In trying to help, she had coincidently got a large splinter in her hand. Before she could even get her helpful tool to the bug itself, she had to learn a painful lesson. The very thing she had chosen to save the poor creature’s life, who obviously needed her help, was the very thing that bit her on the…hand! (Sound familiar?)
Meanwhile, our little prince of a bug, paddled his way over to a small plastic ice cream cone Lou had left outside from the day before. A perfect unwitting floatation device the winged body was able to grab a hold of to pull him from what seemed to be a dire set of circumstances. We both looked over at this brave soul and marveled at his capacity to live, to breathe, to continue his mission to pollinate the world (I imagine)!
Lou clapped and jumped up and down, thrilled for the little fella.
I looked on and wished I could have done more.
It seems I have much to learn from the littlest spirits among us. Maybe we need to offer to shake things up once in awhile, but mostly just stand back and allow nature to take its course. Love it. Laugh at its obscurity and awe at the fact that we are allowed to play a small part in the cosmic plan. I am committed to stopping…watching…and just beeing until I can breathe and smile at the natural, uncontrived unfolding of the souls and world around me.
The week this mindful event took place was the same week I made a conscious decision to be absolutely present with my girls. I vowed to stop worrying about everything else when they needed me (at 2 and 8 months that's pretty much any time they are awake:)). I realized that all those worries will still be there and all I need to do when my babies are with me is be with them. Enjoy them. Be thankful that I have this time with them. Maybe there is a reason I am not working in a conventional job right now. Maybe the universe is providing me with an opportunity to just be with the girls and all I have to do is say "yes!" All I have to do is trust that the universe, my co-creator, will take care of the us. Funny enough, the next week, my dream job dropped in my inbox and another income opportunity I had planted a seed for months ago appeared! So learn to relax and be present with those in front of you and trust you are completely taken care of. Even the telling of this story, that would have never happened if I was checking my email while Lou played, became a blog that I can use as part of my dream job application. So trust people, TRUST...and be!