Caterpillars Can Fly, Too — But They Transform First
I used to put my worth in the hands of other people. Because my identity was so closely tied to how well I performed in society and how much I produced at work. I have had the same benchmark forever — love was measured by the acceptance I saw in the eyes of others.
At times, I was on top of the world because I felt as if I belonged — and at times, I would be down on my knees feeling worthless and broken because I was left behind and not included. I was constantly trying to meet peoples’ expectations, just wanting to belong.
It took me a long time to acknowledge the broken child within and find my intrinsic worth. I have had to face repeated patterns in both my personal and professional life so I could recognise the karmic loops that have been playing. Slowly and courageously, I dived deeper and deeper within to look at the mirror those soulmates showed me and I started breaking the chunks apart.
I chewed on the darkness like a caterpillar would feed before becoming a chrysalis and then emerge as a butterfly. All those coping mechanisms and depressive phases were like the cocoon I was spinning around myself to hide and protect myself.
The last instar of my metamorphosis was the boldest step I ever took in my life — finally refusing to run back to what broke me.
I realised that there were situations that were playing again and again and that, by not changing them, it was as if I was choosing them again and again. It was a vicious circle and I was slowly suffocating.
At one point, I even bargained with my higher self and convinced myself that there was a middle way and I had to be strong in my head. But my body was falling apart. I was showing signs of an autoimmune disorder. I had repeated yeast infections, I was constipated for days, I was losing my hair, and my skin was flaky and dry.
I was depressed and my hormones were completely off track. I remember falling asleep as I was driving because my body was too tired of fighting itself. The specialist I sought told me that I could develop cancer at any time because all the physical symptoms were showing that my body was shutting down.
I started by changing the way I ate and slowly built myself back. Then, I started breaking the barriers I had in my head. I started focusing on myself and decided that it was high time I become who I have always been instead of trying to be someone others wanted me to be.
Know that you will always be too much for some and not enough for others. It’s impossible to live up to the expectations of others because the expectations of people are bottomless. They will always be thirsty for something else from you.
Someone once told me, “People who come into your life are always here for a reason, they are either a lesson or a blessing.” And thus, when I slowly started setting a new standard for how I wanted to be treated, I witnessed people suddenly disappearing from my life.
As I affirmed myself, I realised how many people benefited from my lack of self-love and boundaries. This is when I decided to go through the most unpleasant experience of all. I decided to heal myself to the core and find the tiniest bit of me that I was not loving.
The truth that revealed itself was bitter — I not only had to stop living in the past but I had to stop being a victim of my choices. And last but not least, I had to move out of my comfort zone. I had to stop being afraid of change.
Giving myself the right to choose is the greatest gift of love I could bestow my inner child. I didn’t have to wait for validation from anybody or proof of love from anybody, I just decided to leave any kind of relationship where my soul was not honoured and where I was not respected as a human being.
I have decided to completely reboot my life and recreate myself because I have realised that I didn’t have to feel guilty of having a lack of insight or having made poor life choices out of vulnerability, ego, or ignorance. We all see the majesty of the butterfly but we tend to forget the struggle it goes through to emerge.
Taking ownership of my life and choices and dismantling karmic patterns has been the toughest but boldest thing I’ve ever had to do. I have decided to make corrections in my life and defy what people have assumed I was destined to be. I have chosen to stop conforming, and instead to transform.
When the caterpillar starts chewing on the leaves, it doesn’t yet know its destiny, but it feeds as its instinct dictates. When I started on this path, I didn’t know where it was leading me, but I faced it all.
I faced the dark and angry in me, the pain and despair, the violent and destructive me. What I am sure of is that my Baba and some rare few souls saw the butterfly even when I was a caterpillar. I am grateful for that.
All that matters now is that explore life, however short it is going to be. The life of a butterfly is ephemeral but the time it flew in the sun or rested on a leaf it brought magic to those who crossed its path.
This is the life I hope for myself now.
That I bring comfort and magic in the lives of people who come my way. I do not want to be polished and shine like some precious stone but I want to stay raw and true…becoming who I’ve always been and what the Universe is calling me to become.
Sip a little more: