The Butterfly

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A few years ago I read a story by a woman named Christina Decker called “Finding Bravery In A Butterfly“. With all this talk of cocooning lately and all the inevitable butterfly metaphors flying around I have been thinking a lot about it. Basically it goes like this. One day this woman was sitting at the traffic lights of a very busy intersection waiting to get on with her day, when she noticed a butterfly out among the cars. She remembers thinking how very out of place it looked out there amidst the traffic and smog. She wished it would turn around and go back to the safe place from which it came. She wanted to yell at it, tell it that this concrete jungle was no place for a beautiful butterfly. It needed to be near flowers and nature in order to survive and thrive. In spite of her attempt to will the creature to return to a more familiar place the butterfly proceeded determinately across the busy thoroughfare. It was at this point that the woman began to think that perhaps this butterfly was not lost or confused. Maybe she was purposefully venturing out of her comfort zone in search of greener pastures, taking a risk in the hopes of finding something even better on the other side. Fortunately before the light turned green the butterfly arrived safely at her destination on the other side of the road.

And yes you guessed it, the obvious comparison is coming. Don’t worry i’m not about to suggest for even a moment that any of us went looking for the current situation we are in or to try to minimise it in any way. This pandemic is very frightening, we are all feeling lost, confused and very anxious. None of us know what to do and the days are difficult to get through. All I’m saying is that we are here! We’re out of our comfort zone and in uncharted territory. We have gotten blown off course and I’m afraid turning around is no longer an option, no matter how much we would like to. So we must go forward and hope that the garden that lies on the other side will be more beautiful then the one we’ve left behind. And perhaps we too will emerge a bit bruised, battered but braver than when we started. Stay safe, stay healthy and if at all possible stay sane! x

The Art of Resilience

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We live in an age where we are constantly confronted by so much information. There is so much coming at us all day long.  Every few minutes there is another story, headline or tragedy popping up on our screens. Technology means information is so readily available, that we are trying to digest it all day long. It seems impossible to put that particular genie back in the bottle at this stage so what do we do?  How do we handle this information overload because it doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon? Many of us do still want to keep up with what’s going on in the world but the amount of tragedy we hear about has most definitely increased. Some people view 2016 as the worst year so far in terms of bad news. There was of course the infamous 2016 election, Brexit, copious amounts of terrorist attacks and the loss of so many beloved icons. Again and again people seemed to turn to art as a way of coping with the awful events that were happening in the world. Every day, in spite of the horror people continued making or posting art in its many forms as a way to survive all the tragedy.

One such piece of art was a poem by Maggie Smith (no sorry Downton Abbey fans, not that one) called Good Bones. The poems popularity was sparked by two tragic events that took place last year. One was the Orlando nightclub shooting that killed 49 people and wounded 53 more and the other was the death of British Labour MP Jo Cox in November. These two tragic events led to a surge in the poems popularity. In the following days it was shared online thousands of times. Dozens of famous people like Charlotte Church and Caitlin Moran also posted it to their social media accounts which only served to increase its reach. Then came the results of the American election and it began popping up again. It seemed to capture the mood of more than one nation. Continue reading