Out of the Chrysalis

Celebrating and embracing the transformation within

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Hello World…let’s fly

“Hello world!  I know I have been away for quite some time; life has taken me to places both familiar and unknown”, said the butterfly.   ©KA    

flyLast week during a conversation, it came up that the caterpillar does not know that a struggle is coming, or that it will be transformed into something more beautiful than it once was.  Many of us do not know the storms that lie ahead or how we will be changed because of them.  The difference between our struggle and that of the caterpillar, is the fact that we remember most of what we’ve gone through.  Some say, the butterfly, once it emerges only has memory of its time just before entering the chrysalis.  I can’t decide which is better, remembering every moment of the struggle, or just the very end.

Studies completed on the brain of a caterpillar and that of a butterfly have shown that some memory can be retained after metamorphosis if it was created in the later stages of caterpillar life.  Those studies involve smells with a shock to the caterpillar and when the same scent is offered to the butterfly, it avoided those scents proposing that it remembered the shock.

What if we applied this to a traumatic life event?  It takes me back to times through my healing process where situations or events would bring out feelings of fear and remind me of moments that were hurtful for me.  Even though it is hard to remember what we have gone through, I think we also can learn a lot of lessons through that pain.  I wonder if the butterfly is missing out on some of that since it doesn’t remember most of it’s life as the caterpillar.  Or…is that a blessing in disguise?  I suppose it depends on the situation and how each of us responds to our own healing environment.

The caterpillar could not prepare for what was about to happen, and many times we do not see or anticipate the circumstance that will be forever life changing for us.  When the storm hits were are just thrown in with no clue of how or when we will come out of it.  The caterpillar has to shed its skin in order to enter the cocoon and then it completely turns to mush before being restored to its new version.  We’ve all been reduced to mush at some point during our trial, and then our own metamorphosis occurs.  Taking us from broken to beautiful.

I’ve spent a lot of time over the last few years focusing on the transformation and never really considered what it would feel like to be the butterfly…until now.

The struggle in the chrysalis is a real one and we all go through it differently.  Some caterpillars are inside for months, some weeks, some even a year over winter.  Life changing events do not happen overnight and it is important to know that the changes cannot be rushed.  However, it is critical that the focus be on allowing life to take you through the experiences that will ultimately form your wings and allow you to fly.

For the first time, in a long time I can actually say that I am the fully transformed butterfly.  I’ve closed my eyes and I can see myself emerging.  Taking my first breath of fresh clean air was the most magnificent feeling!  It was cool and crisp, it was filled with joy, and a feeling of love in my heart.  The scents that triggered my shock are now insignificant to my future.   I can honestly say “my wings are ready.”

I stumbled upon a song recently and these words really spoke to me, I hope they are encouraging for you on your healing journey.  “ You won’t forget the heavy steps you took to let it go, but close your eyes count to 10 and hold your breath and fly.”

Can you see your future as a butterfly?  Please share in the comments.

Many Blessings,  Kimberly

Courageous Butterfly

Related Topics/Blogs

Do Caterpillars know the’ll become butterflies?

Do Butterflies Remember Being Caterpillars?




My Empty Suitcase

suitcase1September 5, 2013 may have been a normal day for most, for me it was life changing.  It was a typical day after work, I came home checked the blog and was ready to respond to the comments, never expecting what I was seeing on the screen.

Someone was hurting and  reaching out.  I wanted to jump through the computer and find her, hold her, cry with her and help her. For a brief moment I was paralyzed and did not know what to do, but my emotions took over and I was on the case!

Sometimes sharing feelings or reaching out for help can be looked at in a negative way.  Unfortunately there are people out there who don’t want to hear it or think that we are just complaining to get attention.  But what about those of us who are deeply hurting, on their wit’s end and just needing a place to share their feelings.  When I read her comment I could’ve just moved on to the next one and let it go, heck it was a click on my page. But that would have defeated my purpose of this blog, to help and embrace those going through the pain of loss.  So I did the most logical thing and called the police!  The poor “old” man who answered the phone replied to me with “what’s a blog?” . At that moment I knew that this was all going to be up to me.

Once I was able to make contact, and make sure she was OK and had a friend on the way to be with her I sat silently and just shivered.  I was proud of myself for sticking with it and making sure that this stranger was going to be alright, but at the same time wondering if anyone would have done the same for me, and that is what keeps this blog going.

Compassion, is one of the most important virtues one can possess.  Listening, sharing, looking into the eyes of someone who is hurting can mean the world to them.

suitcaseSo, at this point your wondering why my suitcase is empty….well in just a couple of days I will finally be meeting this woman who has changed me.  She has given me purpose with my blog. She has given me the confidence to continue writing in hopes that I am helping anyone else out there who may be reading.

We have shared a lot of the same hurts over the past few years as our circumstances were similar.  But I want to arrive with my suitcase empty and ready for her to not only share her world, her friendship and love, but to fill my bag with her strength, courage and hope so that I can return home and thrive on the bond that was grown out of sharing our stories and our openness to be there for each other, even though we had not met.


Courageous Butterfly




Imagine……YOUR Change!

life is artI’m here!! It’s finally happened I have climbed an unimaginable hurdle and guess what? I survived!  Though the bumps and bruises along the way have left some scars, I feel like I am ready to embrace my change.  For so long I have wanted to make it all go away, there had to be a way I could go through it without actually living it.

Unfortunately I never found out how to do that.  The road was long and there were many times I wanted to just give up.  Today I sit in my new space with fresh walls that will hold only new memories for me and I am a very happy Butterfly!

It has been very strange since I moved, things are actually happening without a struggle.  The old saying “everything is falling into place” is really happening.  The last few weeks I have caught myself not wanting to get too excited thinking maybe I would jinx something.  If I were to do that though, I would miss out on a lot of new-found happiness.  My surroundings are beautiful, peaceful and a great place for new beginnings.  This weekend I spent decorating and boy did I put my heart into the energy and created what I think are some beautiful rooms.  It’s amazing that one little $2.00 purchase would get the creative juices going and an entire theme room took shape.   I took something that by itself was plain and simple, added a little glitz and created something spectacular.

I am a very lucky lady today, I have been given a chance to embrace my change and imagine all the possibilities of the future.  Just a few years ago I never would have given any of that a second thought.  I was stuck in the event that was forcing unwanted change and thought for sure that is where I would forever be.

My new assignment is to learn how to really take it all in without worry or stress.  I know the practice of living in the moment takes a lot of discipline but I am willing to give it one heck of a try.  Living day-to-day without stressing over something whether it be big or small is just what the doctor ordered.  I am Learning how to imagine a future where I can be happy. Anything_Is_Possible

Within these new plain walls, I have begun to create a canvas of hope.  Something I never thought would come, but will forever be a welcome guest in my new home.

Did you know when you were ready to imagine your change, your future?  Please comment.


Courageous Butterfly


Related Links/Blogs

For The First Time In Forever, Frozen

Your Mind Is A Canvas

You Need To Know Something


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Calm, Cool, and Almost Collected

calmSince my last post dealt with realizing the amount of physical pain that can come along with stress,  I had better follow-up with talking about the stillness that can come following acceptance.

It was not easy for me to grab onto the diagnosis of stress induced nerve damage, it’s not something that is frequently talked about and I had never really heard of it before.  I figured I had two options, shut up and deal with it or argue.  Since I have been searching for three years for the cause of my symptoms I decided I will just shut up and deal, starting with some positive life changes.

I sat down to make a list of things that I thought would help to alleviate some of the stress, but these had to be things that I could actually control.  Of course I would love to say, erase all debt and make me pain free…There! done! stress gone.   That list is the pretend list cause those things are out of my control.  Yes I can work on my lowering my debt but erasing it all is a complete fantasy.  I didn’t want to overwhelm myself with a long list of things to start with so I wrote just a couple and within a weeks time I have been able to make those changes.  The first was to get extra rest.  I decided to make a cut off time every night where I would sit down, decompress and relax.  I would do this with enough time before I actually went up to bed so that once I was ready to sleep, the thoughts of my day would be done and my mind would be able to rest.  I ended up sleeping 12 hours two nights in a row!  I changed my schedule only slightly, doing some of my weekend morning things in the evening, so that if my body wanted to sleep in I would not be missing anything I needed to do.

The second item was to work on changing my thoughts when they drifted to a place that would cause me anxiety.  This meant any anxious thought that popped into my head at any time.  I knew this would be more difficult than the first item would be and would take more effort on my part.  With comments from my counselor we agreed that when these moments came I needed to first take a deep breath to settle myself, then figure out what caused the thoughts.  What was I doing in that moment that prompted it?  Once I have that information, decide is this something I need to be doing, if not then it would be the last time, but if it is then what do I need to do in order to complete that task without raising my stress level?   So far so good that part is going to take some training but I am confident that I learn to master it.rest

All in all I would say I had a productive week and completed my first step to learning how to alleviate stress that is in my life and/or caused by life.  We will never be totally free of stress and I can attest to the fact that traumatic events will cause stress to linger a lot longer than we ever thought possible.  Learning how to cope so that it does not get to the point of causing us physical harm is vital to our wellbeing.

Do you have any suggestions on being calm, cool and collected when surviving stress?  Please share.


Courageous Butterfly


Related blogs/links

Oceans, Hillsong United

Anxiety, A Life Less Physical

Stress Management (AKA the silent Killer), Real Living

Limits And Stress, QuirkyJuice



pause“You can’t fast forward something that hasn’t happened yet, pause press and enjoy the moment”.  I wrote that quote at the beginning of this week and have been staring at it since then.  Some days it made me feel stuck, other’s it helped me to just enjoy the day without worrying about the next.  Tonight it finds me sad and excited at the same time.

I”m sitting in a house that I’ve tried to refinance three times with no luck.  Three strikes and your out as the saying goes.  According to my divorce decree that means it must be sold.  Ironically it is a house I really never wanted to be in and I’ve put in an insane amount of blood, sweat and tears.  I”m not exaggerating either, this project has taken its toll on me.  I am at a point now where I need to finish what I have started and move on.  The house came with my divorce and it holds some pretty messed up memories for me.  Well, not my memories, my fears come to pass.

During this time, my only recourse was to make it my own.  I’ve been told several times that I have accomplished just that.  However, in the process of “making it my own” I have had to deal with the demons that have controlled my thoughts in each and every room of the house.  I cannot remember a day when I have not woken up to the thoughts of what went on here prior to my obtaining the home.  Falling asleep each and every night  with those same thoughts, it is a wonder I am not insane!   Even though some may argue that.

Getting this place ready for the market is going to take a couple more months of work and money, both of which I am running out of energy for.  This entire process has been very stressful and I really need to curtail that somehow.  I’ve tried on several occasions to just “live in the moment” but thoughts of the upcoming weight I will have with trying to sell this place always creep in.  Then there are the days when I picture it sold and I become very excited at first because I will be free of those thoughts and memories of what was here before me.  Unfortunately, those pictures into the future also include the urgency of packing and moving yet again.

Today I took the afternoon not to fast forward in to the future but to just “be”.  I sat outside on the porch which held a very significant moment of my divorce and I stayed there for nearly three hours.  I didn’t think about tomorrow, selling, work, money or moving.  I just sat.  I took in the sounds of nature, the warmth of the sun and I enjoyed that moment.sunlight

Last night a placed a rather unusual sign in the yard that says “For Sale Soon”.  That moment was defining for me, not only letting the community know that it will be on the market in a short time, but letting myself know that in time,  I will be able to release all of those thoughts, memories and fears that have been weighing on my mind for so long.  I’m sure that sign will make most chuckle and may even be confusing to some and to that I say, “oh well”.  That sign for me is a stepping stone towards healing and peace, which I desperately need at this point in time, before I embark on my next journey.  To quote yet another memorable saying, there is a light at the end of my tunnel; knowing how long that tunnel is, well that’s just not possible.

Have you ever questioned the length of your tunnel?  I welcome your comments.


Courageous Butterfly


Related blogs/links

Overcome, Shine Bright Baby

Little Caterpillar, Today I Am With God

Growing, sirexpressive



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Extra, Extra, Read all about it…..the eBook is PUBLISHED!!!

It’s done!, It’s Done!, It’s DONE!!!!

After two years of writing, while living through it, I finally have the eBook completed and published.  I have to say it is an amazing feeling and I certainly understand why it takes so long for books to be complete.  This is just a simple 30 page eBook and it took me almost the entire day  just to upload it to the publishing site.  A print version will be available very soon for those of use non-computer savvy people.

I need to give some shout out’s here, first to my editor…Christopher Woodside I can’t begin to express my gratitude for all the work you did on this project, not only with the editing but also with getting me through some really rough times.   Asking you to edit the book seemed  logical to me because you saw me through each and every word on those pages.  I will be forever grateful.

Second goes out to Tracie Louise Photography for providing the cover pic at a very reasonable price two years ago when this project was just a glimmer in my eyes.

Next I need to thank David Hall Page for your generous, fabulous, sweet yet comical forward.  You are also someone who has gotten me through some “crap” as you put it and it means a lot to me to have you part of this project.

Finally but not in the least my family, friends, and spiritual advisors…you all know who you are!  But if you want to see your name in print I’ll throw out a few, here goes:  Michelle, Susan, Chuck. Rachel, my lovely children, Mom, Daddy, Michael, Phyllis, Elizabeth, and my awesome co-workers.

So without further ado I proudly announce

eBook Version:

Out Of The Chrysalis:  Free To Fly  (click link for purchasing information)

Out of the Chrysalis : Free to Fly

Paper back print version:

Out Of The Chrysalis: Free To Fly (click link for purchasing information)

Out of the Chrysalis : Free to Fly


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From The Bottom Of My Heart

thank you wordle

I want to take a moment to say thank you to my awesome readers for the kind words you have said in your comments on my posts.  Most recently there was a comment on how open and honest my articles are.   I have to admit it is very easy for me to be totally honest when I”m writing. It is almost the only time that my feelings are in a way completely naked. Something happens within me and the words just flow from my heart to the keys and before I know it I have put words to the way I am feeling.

I ended up going to a Christian concert last night last-minute and I am so glad I did. I was able to hear some of the artists speak and one in particular stood out. He spoke of writing the songs and said that their songs are words of experiences they all have gone through. In a sense their journal. He stated that if someone would critique their song, they were actually critiquing the personal journals of each band member.

That is exactly what I am trying to accomplish with my blog. I am putting all of myself out there because that is what I needed in the heat of my divorce, and still to this day. I find comfort in knowing that I may help someone else and at the same time I am cleansing and healing with each word that is written.

Reading your kind comments keeps me from worrying if I’m telling too much, sometimes I think maybe I’ve said more than I needed to in order to get the point across and other times I don’t think I’ve said enough.  You may be surprised to learn that usually the days when I”m struggling the most with my inner feelings, those are the posts that are the easiest to write.  When I stop and think about that now, it’s because in those moments my heart is at it’s most vulnerable.  heartjournal

I’ve been working hard on the eBook and it is just about ready for publication, and I cannot wait for you all to read it, I will welcome your comments with open ears, eyes, and of course my heart.  

Thank you for your continued support, prayers and blessings.


Courageous Butterfly