Saturday, March 28, 2015

Moth Memories

I'm late for a very important date!

I agreed to a challenge from Beauty Flows regarding pollinators, and I can't find the photo I was going to use. So, I'll have to share some stories instead.

Butterflies have always had a magical quality to me--and probably for most--which is why they are such a loved insect. I've heard that when a butterfly lands on you, you get a wish. I wonder if the same goes with moths?

When I was thirteen-ish years old my family had regained a hunting/fishing lodge in the Medicine Bow National Forest. My mother, sister and I were driving on the very wet and muddy early-summer roads, and got stuck. We ended up walking six miles in the mountains to get to the lodge and get help to free the car. It was a long, wet (because it sprinkled on us the whole time) journey.

On one of our frequent breaks, we sat on a log at the side of the road. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a huge, grey, fuzzy moth the size of a desert plate appeared fluttering down the road. I'd never seen any moth that size, much less in the mountains. It was beautiful, too, covered with dove-grey feather and white markings.

It drifted straight over to us, taking a look, and then settled itself right on my knee. It sat there for quite a while, and then just took off and fluttered the rest of the way down the road.

Most butterflies and moths in Wyoming in are small, so the size of this one really stood out and had an otherworldly quality to it. I think all three of us wanted to believe it was an angel in insect clothing.

There is one other time where a butterfly has made a special appearance, and I've wondered if it could be a spirit in disguise.

As I mentioned just last week, my sister, Dyan, died in 2001. I got married in late August of 2002. Of course I wished she could be there, and her absence was very palpable, as was that of my Grandmother who had died three weeks before my wedding.

After the wedding, a gigantic, yellow and black, butterfly (you know the type) fluttered through the tent we had erected in my parents back yard. I've only seen this type of butterfly once in Wyoming. (When one had attached itself to my drumset after I'd played outdoors, cocooned and then birthed itself in February in my bedroom.) I've definitely never seen such a butterfly out in the plains, where there are no trees.

The butterfly on my wedding day fluttered right up to me, and landed on one of the tent lines, maybe three feet away from me, and then took off, disappearing over the prairie.

My mother and I had always said that butterflies reminded us of Dyan, and so it felt like she'd sent the butterfly to let me know that she was there, even if I couldn't see her. So, butterflies and moths now hold an additional special place in my heart.

Thank you so much, Tammie Lee, for letting me join the challenge, and I look forward to hopping around and seeing everyone else's posts! If anyone is interested in seeing more posts, pictures and/or artwork related to pollinators, go over to Beauty Flows for the list!

Do you have any special butterfly memories?

22 comments:

  1. Lara,

    Beautiful memories of butterflies and moths. My pollinator entry is about butterflies too!

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    1. I'll have to come and take a look! Thanks for coming to visit!

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  2. That's a beautiful collection of memories Lara. I'm inclined to think that the moth and butterflies were definitely sent for a reason. My absolutely most favourite moth memory was when, as a young mother, my first house, first garden, first summer, I saw a hawk moth calmly fluttering around sipping nectar form my own seed grown flowers. I was so proud! And, never actually having seen a hawk moth before, it was absolutely magical. That may have been a million years ago, but it feels like yesterday. :D

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    1. I had to look up hawk moth, and what an beautiful moth! I didn't know there were any that were arrow shaped. Well, I guess I did, because we have regular miller infestations here in the spring, and they are arrow shaped, but I didn't know big ones came in that shape. Or those colors! That would be a magical experience, especially knowing you were able to draw them to you!

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  3. I really enjoyed the stories of your amazing butterfly memories; thank you for sharing them...

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    1. Thank you so much for coming and reading them!

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  4. hello Lara,that are some special stories, a moth the size of a desert plate, wow, magical!

    it's quite beautiful that butterflies reminds you and your mother of your sister, they are special creatures.
    thanks for sharing

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    1. I've always liked butterflies, but now they're super-special to me. We have little blue butterfly swarms in the spring for just about a week that are so whimsical and jolly. The play in the cool air above water, so when I see them I always try to get out the sprinklers. They are neat creatures!

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  5. No, but what a cool story. I love butterflies too and wished we'd see more of them. I'm not very good with plants though, so I haven't tried to grow things that might attract them.

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    1. That's the weird thing about the butterflies around here. The plants that typically attract butterflies don't really grow here, so when I see butterflies of any kind, it's like just the fact of seeing them is a gift to be appreciated. :)

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  6. I actually do have a kinda cool butterfly memory. At the Houston Museum of Natural Science there's a large chamber that simulates a natural environment and has a bunch of live butterflies fluttering around inside, and you can traverse the chamber and be one with them. One of the butterflies apparently really liked my tie-dye shirt and decided to land on it and hang out for a while.

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    1. There's a place called the Butterfly Pavilion in Denver that sounds similar. It really is an amazing feeling to be standing in the middle of butterflies and it feels so special to be the one that gets picked for an up-close and personal visit. :D

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  7. That's lovely, Lara! Butterflies and ladybugs are symbolic to me. Love it.

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  8. don't I wish I had your luck. sadly I've not seen butterflies all that much and the few I've seen aren't particuarly special or pretty but still, it's nice to see one now and then.

    hope you have a lovely day.

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    1. I agree, even seeing one every once in a while can feel special. :)

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  9. Your memories are sweet, Lara. Thanks for sharing them with us.
    The short version of a long story is, my friend's son had a butterfly dining on the peanut butter on his chin.

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    1. That sounds amazing, and I'm wondering if anyone got pictures of it!

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  10. wow, i'd take it as signs as well, it can't harm to be charmed by the most wonderful and light insect on earth... that moth on your journey, it does mean transformation, does it not? what a great happening... lovely to meet you, n♥

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    1. Very nice to meet you, too! It can't hurt, can it, to allow ourselves to believe in a little magic. :)

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  11. A lovely story. Yes there might be parallel worlds.. or world.. I think I would look at this cases just as you did.

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    1. Thank you! It's much nicer to believe in something special, and allow the possibility of magic into daily life, I think. I'm glad to have met a kindred spirit. :D

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