JUST KEEP MOVING
Most every single morning run leads me through my neighborhood’s city park. There, I see trees in bloom, families making the trek toward school, state of the art sidewalk chalk creations and familiar faces on their quest to “get moving” each day. It’s a place of transit and activity and complete and total joy. In this little green retreat within the concrete jungle, people come alive. It’s a pretty sweet thing to experience.
A few days ago, I was running, and, for whatever reason, on this particular day, I saw more than a dozen caterpillars. Long and lanky, moving slowly but surely, they traipsed around the half mile track at Tietze Park (at a pace only about a nanosecond slower than, well, yours truly). Every time I’d pass one, I’d look down at it, giving it the attention it’s due. But, after the twelfth one, I stopped, wondering what lesson they were teaching me.
So, just me and the caterpillar, face to face, my two eyes to its twelve, I gave it my undivided attention. There, something dawned on me, in Lao Tzu’s words, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” That day, my goal was short-term. Get up, exercise, eat well, lose weight, repeat until… I lose ten pounds or I cheat with a delectable Sprinkles cupcake. But, for the caterpillar, its goal is long-term. It knows where it’s going, how it’s going to get there and it is diligent in it’s pursuit of just that. At it’s own pace, it makes its way along its own journey. It compares itself to nothing, nor is it rushed by anything.
I realized that the process of metamorphosis demands our respect because it takes time, effort and determination. A caterpillar doesn’t blink and become a butterfly. No, it embraces the process, knowing it gets a beautiful set of wings in the end.
There’s so much in life that we want, but, often, so little we are willing to put the work in for. But, truth be told, we greatly appreciate those things we work the hardest for. Next time, I’m barely moving around Tietze Park, I’ll remember my teacher that sunny morning, the caterpillar. Life isn’t a sprint. It’s a journey. Embrace it. For heaven’s sake, enjoy it. And, whatever you do, just keep moving forward- your wings await you!
Happy Earth Day!
Comments are closed