Out of the Chrysalis

Celebrating and embracing the transformation within


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Accepting Transformation Part 1


orangebutterflyI have had an amazing butterfly experience!  As I mentioned previously, I was able to bring home two caterpillars in the hopes of being able to be part of their transformation. I am happy to report that I was able to observe every stage, and at times I felt myself going through every change right along with them.

Exciting times when a girl gets to bring home a couple of caterpillars, and the moment I carried them through the door was the beginning of a whole new set of experiences. Little did I know, it was also the beginning of a new set of emotions as well.

It took just two days before they headed to the top of the cup and attached themselves to the lid.  It is in this spot where they would hunker down and prepare for the inevitable. Because they were in such a confined space, they really didn’t have much of a choice as to where they could go and safely transform.  Being able to hatch and release butterflies in homes or schools is something that has been going on a for a while, but it still didn’t change the fact, their environment as they knew it, had forever been changed.

I had no idea how that one movement of the caterpillars would remind me of what I experienced at the beginning of my trial.  I too was forced to hunker down in a confined space . It was not my choice; my emotions and peace of mind were not safe;  and the environment as I knew it, was about to be forever changed.

Just two days after the chrysalis was completely formed I was able to remove the lid and chrysalis2hang it in the hatching habitat.  During this process one of the chrysalis’ came loose and fell to the bottom.  I immediately reached for my instructions to find out what to do.  The instructions were to gently scoop it up with a spoon and place it on a paper towel.  It said most likely the butterfly would still be able to hatch without any damage.  Needless to say, worry was setting in.

Once I really thought about what the caterpillar may be going through, I was brought back to a moment when I was curled up in a ball in the corner of my kitchen, hoping I would come out of my experience without any damage.  

chrysalis1Once in the chrysalis the caterpillars will hatch within 7-10 days, and I made sure to keep an accurate count.  I was even able to set up a butterfly web cam so I wouldn’t miss a trick!  Guess what? I missed two tricks!  The first butterfly emerged prior to the camera being set up, this was the one at the bottom of the habitat.  I was so happy to see it had survived, that it eased my disappointment in not witnessing it.  Knowing the second one was just a day behind I stayed close by the web cam.  Just as a little kid knows when you are watching, this butterfly took a 7 minute window in the 30 minutes I had been away from the camera to come into our world.  Luckily for me the web cam took photos of movement and I was able to view it after the fact.

Excitement mounted high for me, knowing I was going to sleep that night with butterflies in my room and in the same moment, sadness set in knowing they would soon be released.  I knew all along that would be the outcome, but a part of me wanted to hang onto them forever if I could.

For a very long time I wanted to hold on to the feelings I had for my ex.  I felt sadness knowing that someday those feelings would no longer exist and a part of me wanted to cling to them.  The sane part of me knew that releasing the energy surrounding these feelings was the best thing I could do in order to heal.  Instead of holding on, I was able to finally release and let it go just as I would have to with the butterflies.

When I wrote Out of The Chrysalis; Free to Fly I thought I had fully experienced the similarities of the caterpillar during transformation.  The witness of this metamorphosis, has shown me that my book was just the beginning of fully understanding, not only the caterpillars experience, but also my own.

Stay tuned for the conclusion of the butterflies journey in my next post Accepting Transformation part 2.

Have you been able to see similarities in life situations? Please share in the comments.

Courageous Butterfly 4/27/17

Kimberly

 

 

 

 


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Normal, except for:


test resultsResults are good, everything checks out except for the following:  There are trivial amounts of an abnormality and the source is unknown. You may go about your normal daily activities.

Would you find this helpful on your healing journey or do you see it as a way to hide an underlying reason for what you are suffering with?

When I was in the midst of my divorce I tried very hard to make sure my life looked normal.  I did a lot of pretending, some saw through it but other’s did not.  As I look back now, I think if I had just let things ride out naturally without hiding my actual feelings I may have made my healing process a lot easier.

Instead I chose to make it look like my life was normal knowing inside that there was an “except for” clause attached to it.  Unfortunately, I let that feeling of normalcy be a guide to making some poor decisions.  I was living as if the results were 100% what I wanted them to be, when in reality that was far from the truth.

So, am I behind in my healing journey because of that,  or am I that much further ahead for recognizing it?  When I think back to what I can apply it to I am reminded of a series of questions and answers.

Q:  How are you holding up?        A:  I’m great, thank you for being concerned.

Q:  You look like your handling things very well are you ok?  A:  Ya, it get’s better every day.

Q:  Your so strong, how do you do it?         A:  I have God at my side.

I could go on but will stop at those that were asked the most.  The important thing is what all of these have in common.  Every question resulted in a normal answer, one that seemed like everything was in control.  However, each answer neglected to give the details about the “except for” that I felt with every part of my being.  Same questions but honest answers: results

A:  I’m great except that I feel like my life is a mess, and I’m not sure how I will come out of all of this.

A:  Every day is a constant struggle I need all the help I can get to make it through my day.

A:  I need the prayers of everyone I know to make sure I survive this.

The first set of answers were all warm and fuzzy right?  Sugar coating makes us feel better and we appear to be strong to those who are watching us survive our tragedy.  But are we just hampering our healing and the ability to move on if we are not being honest with how we are actually feeling?  Healing from anything can be a very long process and we all do it in our own time.  Nothing is cut and dry especially when it comes to getting “normal” results.

My advice to you is, if you want a 100% normal result, put in the effort to achieve it. Be honest not only with yourself but with those around you and let them carry you on whatever part of your journey they are meant to be on.  It will be worth it.

If you can relate to acting normal but living with the “except for’s” please share your stories.

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly 6/13/16

 

 

 

 


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Fly with Grace, Peace and Hope


flygirlI was all set to call it a night, I leaned over to turn off the light and my body paused.  I looked at the lamp and was reminded that I still carry pieces of my past with me.  As I embark on yet another move, I am determined to let go of these items that have lingered in places where they really didn’t need to be.

Take for instance the lamp…which I made from a wine bottle…that was given to me by my ex.  I have moved three times since my divorce and apparently this lamp has made the trip.  Why is it still at my bedside?

I sat down at my vanity earlier today to begin to clean out the drawers and found an old wallet.  I pulled out old business cards and in the middle I found a photo probably 15 years old or more of the two of us on a New Year’s Eve…why is this photo still in this wallet?

I shopped at the grocery store today and gave the cashier my phone number for my rewards card…she repeated the name and it is still registered under my married name, why?

I received mail this week that was addressed to Mr. and Mrs…. why?  The company who sent it clearly knows that I am divorced.

I am in a place in my life where I am making positive changes, and for the first time I feel like they are changes that God wants me to make.  Things are moving smoothly and in a positive direction.  So then why am I getting all of these little reminders of my marriage?

It’s been five years and yet every time I make a literal move I find more mementos of our life together. I thought for sure I had done a formal cleanse but items still seem to surface.  This move has to be it…I no longer want to find these items that carry so much weight.  I like to think that I am at peace with my circumstance.   Truthfully I am, until that moment that I’m not.

fly freeYou can’t forget life and you can’t undo what’s been done.  What you can do is learn, grow and survive.  I know in the coming weeks as I continue to pack I will most likely stumble across more things that I thought I had let go of.  I will put on my wings and FINALLY set the items free.  Lightening the load will make it much easier for me to move both physically and emotionally.

Soon, I will return to the area where I grew up,  without the restraints of where I have been. Fueled with the power given to me by my children, friendships, experiences, and all of my scars, I will be at peace.  I will be ready for yet another transformation to become the best butterfly I can be! Fly with grace, confidence and hope.

Have you flown? Have you let it all go? Are you at peace?   Please share in the comments.

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

5/12/16

Related posts/topics

Tell Your Hear To Beat Again, Danny Goke

 

 

 

 

 


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Learning how to listen


a quiet moment in Hawaii 2011

a quiet moment in Hawaii 2011

I can remember when I was little and my mom or dad would always ask in an angry tone “don’t you listen?” or “why aren’t you listening to me?” Well I’ve been asking myself that exact question for the last few years.  My divorce recovery has not always gone the best, there have been good and bad days but for the most part I can say I am proud of where I am right now.  Except for just one thing…I still do not know how to listen.

I am referring to listening to my inner self, thoughts, questions and fears.  During these last few years I have found much difficulty in trusting myself to make decisions even the simple ones.  I have sought out advice from everyone I am in contact with on pretty much all aspects of my life and I still find myself in limbo.  I have heard over and over again what a patient woman I am yet I cannot seem to find the patience within my own being.

When I counseled last she recommended to me that there really wasn’t a need for me to come back, that took me by surprise and kind of upset me.  Then she asked what I had hoped to gain from our sessions and I couldn’t answer.  Why was I really there?  She said that it looks to her like I am feeling stuck.  I quickly agreed.  At this point in my life I had hoped that I would be on a clear path yet I am still trudging through some mud and jumping over puddles.

Today, I watched Soul Surfer, it is a VERY inspirational movie about a young girl who loses her arm in a shark attack.  This young person overcame every obstacle set in her way and she realized her dream of becoming a professional surfer.  There was one scene in the movie that caught my attention along with my heart.  I think it fits almost every situation that deals with loss and the message I took from it is that you just have to be patient and listen.

I am going to try my best to focus every day on just listening to my body, mind, and heart and then live my day accordingly.  At the same time making sure that what I am doing is guiding me towards my future, whatever that may be.  The lines below are from the scene I referenced.  You can also click here to view the clip.

If you can offer suggestions on learning to listen to your inner self please share!!! I would love to hear what you have to say!

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

 

Bethany Hamilton:

Go ahead, tell me how everything’s going to be okay.

Tom Hamilton:

Yea that’s me Mr. jump-right-in-and-fix-it, maybe I should just keep my mouth shut for once.

Bethany Hamilton:

I’m done, aren’t I? I can’t even paddle out to the line up passed the big waves. I don’t understand, what happened to… I can do all things. Why? Why did this happen? Why did I have to lose everything?

Tom Hamilton:

You didn’t lose everything Bethany, not even close. That shark didn’t kill you, you’re here, you’re alive, you have your family.

Bethany Hamilton:

But what am I suppose to do now?

Tom Hamilton:

I don’t know…

Bethany Hamilton:

Then how am I suppose to know?

Tom Hamilton:

When the times right you’ll know. You just have to listen.

Bethany Hamilton:

Listen for what?

Tom Hamilton:

For whatever comes next.

 


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The Gloves Are Off….Healing In The Moment


glvoesOk, here goes nothing!  Those were my thoughts this afternoon as she headed to my way.  At first I thought I was dreaming.
Sitting in my car in the driveway of what was once my marital home to pick up the kids and I saw her through the window.  I froze at first not sure how to handle this.  The last time we said one word to each other it was….well, actually it was very civilized.  But that’s a story for my next book.  Anyway, there I was not knowing what I should do and the little voice inside me said, “Kimberly, open the window and keep your hands safely on the wheel, make sure your foot is off the gas and the car is in park”.  Any unintentional accident needed to be avoided.

She had a reasonable question concerning one of my kids .  I knew I had to answer, I took in a breath and answered as cool and calmly as I could making sure I had a nice friendly smile on my face.   I was having an exceptionally good hair day, was dressed for a family party so I think I was looking pretty darn good.  With a small but noticeable flip of my freshly styled summer blonde hair I gave her the answer she was looking for.  We continued to chat as if we were the best of friends, (not really but a stranger would not have known any different) and I’m sure her stomach was churning just as much as mine was.

While departing the driveway I had a feeling of liberation.  It was like in that short maybe three-minute conversation something in me changed.  I had survived that meeting and very glad that I had been seated safely in my car, because if I had been standing and actually felt my quivering legs it would have been a totally different experience.

What I have learned from today is that maybe I am actually healing as far as my feelings for her are concerned.  Three years ago I would not have been able to look her in the eyes and carry on a polite conversation.  Today I over came that!  I faced my fear took off the gloves that were holding on to the uncertainty, pain, and bitterness and in that moment I set them aside.  Will they always be off?  Well only time will tell I suppose.growth

I drove off with all my kids in tow with a feeling of happiness that has been a long time coming.  I felt as if I had just climbed the highest mountain, stuck my flag in the ground, held my arms up to the sky and smiled in the sunlight.

What I want to share with you through all of this is that healing can occur when you LEAST expect it.  And my friends, for me that experience was amazing!  Keep your eyes and ears open for your moment, don’t worry about when it will happen or if it will happen, like I said this one came out of nowhere for me.  Just try not to run from it.  Suppress the initial flight reaction. (I wont’ lie it was there for me but I’m no race car driver, so burning rubber out of the driveway would have been way too obvious.)  Take control of the moment when you are facing it and enjoy its reward!

Has anyone else experienced a liberating healing moment?  Please share.

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

7/6/14

 

 


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Surrender…And Seek The Blessings


UPDATE:  Two days after writing this post I was lucky enough to attend a Laura Story Concert.  I was a little apprehensive about going because after all it was Valentines Day!  But I sucked it up and went anyway.  I’d like to share the video I took of Laura performing the song Blessings, which I referenced in this blog post. (click link below)  Close your eyes, listen to the words then pay close attention around the 4:47 minute mark…..The song ends yet she still has a little more to say.  Listen to her words and then look at the title of this post again!  It’s truly AMAZING!  That was a very big God moment for me, it was in that moment that I knew he is aware of what is going on in my life!  Enjoy!

http://youtu.be/v7K3K97XEcM

 

“The moment you completely accept your non-peace, your non-peace becomes transformed into peace. Anything you accept fully will take you into peace. This is the miracle of surrender.” – Eckhart Tolle

When I read that quote I could picture the caterpillar in the cocoon at her weakest moment, afraid, unsure and unaware of her potential if she would just take a deep breath and surrender.  Sounds easy right?  How many times have we told ourselves to stop and take a deep breath, then move forward.  Probably too many to count.  This week I had the chance to wave my flag and surrender.

flowers_surrender_124110I’ve noticed that while we see the beautiful butterfly, the product of all the hard work, we rarely see the caterpillar.  I visited a butterfly garden this summer and the focus was on the butterflies flying around the exhibit, but I was entranced with the caterpillars in their cocoons.  The time spent in the chrysalis is the toughest part of the transformation.  I would guess that there would be confusion, pain,  worry and fear.  Sounding familiar?  They are too me.  Those are exactly the feelings I dealt with while surviving my divorce, or as I like to think of it, the beginning of my time spent in the chrysalis.

I was forced to make many tough and painful decisions during that time and one of them is still with me today.  It is one that I had been regretting for the last year, that has caused not only emotional pain but some financial hardship as well.  I knew that I could not continue to beat myself up about it and I had resolved that it was the right thing to do at the time.  I had become satisfied with the fact that it was now in my past.  I was living with it and thought that I was at peace.  Due to some unforeseen circumstances in my near future,   I have come to a part on my journey where I need to make yet another important decision that will create change.  Initially all I could feel was anxiety, so much of my life the last few years has all been about unwelcome change. That terrified me and I know I did not take the time I should have to come to the decision I had, even though I know it is the right one.  I had been praying for guidance and for a specific resolution that did not come.   I questioned the reasons why I was still facing the outcome of my decision.  I often felt myself wanting to question my faith, unsure of the possible lesson God was trying to teach me.  Then with the help of a song that had gotten me through  many sleepless nights, I was reminded that my blessings may come from raindrops, my healing from tears, and if I stay strong, this too I will conquer, for this trial may be my mercy in disguise.  Laura Story, Blessings.   Listening to that song, and really thinking about its meaning, helped to ease my anxiety. It also gave me the chance to take a deep breath and surrender the situation to God.  I realized I could no longer control any outcome whether it be the one I wanted or not and lucky for me I was about to get many unplanned hours to really think about it.  Just like the caterpillar…

Just a few days after announcing my decision, I was struck down with the “nursing home flu”, which meant a 7 day quarantine.  The first few days I really didn’t spend much time in deep thought but as I began to feel better and wander around my place I had the opportunity to take some inventory.  I had found several files on my laptop that were left over from my divorce, notes I had written in times of sadness, and items from my marriage that I really didn’t  need to be holding onto.  I started to realize that I should use the downtime to fully surrender to the changes I had gone through, purge them and let myself go, in hopes that someday I can become the butterfly I am destined to be.

I spent many hours hitting the delete button, wiping the tears as I went along, feeling relief as the files were disappearing from my sight.  When I got too emotional and wanting to give up,  I tried to imagine myself as the caterpillar shedding a little bit of her fuzz as she transformed inside the chrysalis.   After a while I felt exhilarated.   I chose that moment to really sit and think about the decision I had made earlier in the week, making sure that it was truly something I could handle.  I came to the conclusion that YES I can handle it.  It may not be something that I hoped would happen or something that I planned for, in fact it’s quite the opposite.  Was my divorce something I planned or hoped for? No, but I have come out of it changed, transformed, re-born and strong!  This decision was no different and it will give me the same opportunities for growth.  I can see the progress I have made and I know I am stronger, because this change,  this place I will be going to, is the same spot where just a few years ago I became the strongest version of myself I had ever been.  you-are-free-to-fly_thumb

Today, after being locked up and alone for nearly a week I can say that I am strong enough to handle this new change and I can see good in it.  The positives far outweigh the negatives and with a little elbow grease, perseverance  love and determination, I will come out on top in the end.  Perhaps what is most important, is that with this surrender I no longer have the worry about making the initial decision in the first  place.  In surrendering, I have found peace.

If the caterpillar never surrendered and if there was no change, there would never be a butterfly.  Take the opportunity when it is thrown at you to wave your white flag, surrender to your feelings, doubts, fears and move forward on your journey with faith, hope and love.

Have you had your chance to surrender? Leave a comment.  (link is left of the post title)

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly 2/11/13

Related Links/Blogs

I’ve Stood On The Edge Long Enough

Being Bel, The Art Of Surrender

Goddess In The Belly, Surrender


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Unfortunate Events


Anyone remember the book series?  A series of unfortunate events.  It was a very popular book series when my boys were younger.  My oldest read them on his own then I read them with the younger two.  We all really enjoyed the series until the movie came out.  Sadly, it was not as good as the books and we were all very disappointed.   Sorry Jim Carey.   Each book focused on an unfortunate event that led to a bigger one and then a bigger one and on an on.  Eventually it got to a point where an important decision had to be made.

What exactly is an event?  The dictionary says it is a significant occurrence or happening.  Which means that most of what we go through in life is an event.  Even the little things are significant in our lives.  So what happens when we have a series of negative or unfortunate events?

I’ve had my fair share of big, medium, small, extra-large, extra small, and double extra-large size unfortunate events unfold over the past few years.  I’ve struggled through them with friends, counseling and making changes in my life.  I’ve been moving in a positive direction with my job, friends, and even dating.  Things were going so well until………..Another unfortunate event.

I fell……fell how?  Lost my balance and hit the pavement.  People fall all the time, why is this a significant event in my life?  It’s forced me to ask myself why the fall?  why now?  Why in the midst of my happiness am I being forced to STOP, REST, and THINK?

Anyone see the movie City of Angels?    The angel falls so that he can be human and enjoy all of the senses we do.  He falls so he can smell, taste,  touch, and be able to love.  What a silly angel!  He quickly learns just how painful life can be when we are able to use all of those senses.

During the series of my unfortunate events I’m sure I’ve missed out on a few things.  I have let my emotions get the best of me sometimes and didn’t allow myself to fully enjoy my surroundings.  Even with the divorce aside my life has still been stressful. Trying to adjust to my new lifestyle, living away from the kids, the new job (s), and learning how to be close to someone again.  I’ve adapted to it all but have I really let it all sink in?

If I were to analyze this past week, I’d say my fall is a really good reason to stop and smell the roses.  I need to take a minute and a big deep breath to see if I am where I really need to be.  Now that I’m past the divorce, and somewhat comfortable in my surroundings, it’s time to reflect on the decisions I’ve made.  I no longer have to make any decisions based on what I’m going through.  That is all behind me and I need to focus on the future.    First step is to determine if the fall is in any way related to my other health concerns.  Secondly is to embrace the resting time to really reflect on where I am heading and what makes me happy.

So, was the angel really silly to fall?  I’d say no!  Even though I’ve been through hell and back and have fallen yet again it has made me realize that I was missing out on some of those senses.  I need to close my eyes and really taste the pear, smell the oranges, and feel the fruit in my mouth.  (if you saw the movie you will get that, if not rent the movie!)

I guess the point I”m trying to make is that when you fall no matter what the circumstances are, take the time to really figure out what you are supposed to be doing during your down time.  There is a reason we fall be it just in a slump for a while, fall in love, fall out of love, or literally hit the pavement.  It is a moment in time that will lead to our next event.

I have two to three weeks to embrace my fall and reflect on where I am and why.  I cannot wait to see where I am headed!  I’d love to hear your experiences on how a fall or unfortunate event changed something in your life. Comment below.

Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

8/30/12