I’ve never given deep thought to the life cycle of a butterfly. Besides children’s books and craft projects, that is. A tiny egg, a growing caterpillar, and a beautiful butterfly. It sounds simple, especially when mapped out with cotton balls, popsicle sticks, and coffee filters.
But none of those descriptions mention the chrysalis or what happens inside. The transformation is anything but simple. It is hard and sometimes painful. Near-perfect conditions are required for the butterfly to be released.
This week, saying goodbye to my dad, I was reminded of the shell left behind. It held so much life. Protected the spirit and soul of its occupant. And when the time came, allowed its release.
Death is part of life. I know that. And my dad lived his to the fullest, good times and bad. Health conditions over the past few years caused him to slow down. Challenging for someone who spent their life building things.
Instead of swinging a hammer, he would cook dinner for kids at church. Instead of traveling on mission trips, he would encourage friends thru phone calls. He did not complain. And most of all, he enjoyed his life with my mom. Picnics by the lake, coffee, cookies in the evenings, doctor appointments…life.
His sweet soul is no longer with us. It has been released. My faith tells me he is with God. And though that brings comfort, I selfishly wish he was still with us. The missing is hard. I suppose it is a part of my transformation…