I was enjoying a pleasant afternoon in my front yard with my mom, starting to shift the garden from summer to autumn…the autumnal equinox right around the corner. There were some gorgeous white flowers we were cutting back. I put a few of them aside so I could bring them inside and enjoy them for a bit longer. As I was putting them down I was drawn to the funky bug walking around on the white petals. It was kind of cute, actually, his hands were walking along the edge of the petal and reminded me of a praying mantis a bit. And the colors were those of Halloween. He had wings, but didn’t immediately used them as he careful grasped the petal and walked up and down the razors edge. His antenna fluttered around, sensing and learning about its surroundings. Eventually he flew off and left a bit of a smile behind on my face.
A little later as I was putting the flowers in a vase my mom had prepared for me, a lady bug emerged from the flowers. I had just had a lady bug experience on my yoga mat while I was teaching last week, and I immediately smiled at the luck of seeing this one too. I encouraged him onto my hand and brought him outside so he could join the garden. He walked around on my hand for a while, feeling the breeze and then spreading his wings, allowing himself to be lifted off and taken back to the earth.
And then a pincher bug (apparently called earwigs) emerged. These bugs have always freaked me out a bit. Their pinchers seem sharp and able to rip my face off. They’re fast and slinky-like, skuttering around and being all intimidating like. Definitely no roly poly. And my breath got caught in the back of my throat as I watched it trying to figure out how to get off the flower and attack me. And then I had a flashback of holding my beloved’s scorpion in my hand (no, it’s not a euphemism). They were intimidating, are still intimidating, little Isis and Osiris, but watching the curiosity of my beloved has given me new perspectives on these little creatures that aren’t actually out to attack us, despite how we may perceive them, they’re just trying to live. So I took a deep breath and allowed the little pincher bug to crawl onto my gloved hand and then I took him outside to the garden as well. I didn’t necessarily just let him wander on my hand, I was a bit more efficient about getting him onto a blade of grass. And I reflected for a moment on what had happened, and had the simple thought, he has a place in the garden too.
It was one of those moments that made me realize the respect I had developed for all of life. It made me happy to realize I would go to the same efforts to save a bug that scared me a bit as I would any other bug. I know, they were bugs. But I’d like to think that I treat humans similarly. Or at least that’s my goal.