To all the Ladybirds

Stuck in my head is a memory of me when I was about six years old.

I had gone along with my classmates to the back area of the school for PE lessons and for some reason I don’t remember, I did not participate in the exercises. Instead, I wandered into the high grass area surrounding the field.

As I walked through the weeds daydreaming and talking to my imaginary friends, I noticed this bright red bugs with intricate white, black and yellow designs on their backs. Struck with awe and amazement, I leaned forward to take a closer look and to my surprise, it spread it’s beautiful wings and flew off. I had never seen anything like this: so little but gorgeous. I looked around me and noticed that there where more of these little creatures running along blades of grass in the field and I decided in my little head that I was going to have some of them for keeps.

Throughout my remaining lessons for that day, I kept thinking about the bugs I had seen in the school field – I didn’t even know what they were called at the time. As soon as I heard the closing bell ring, I took out a clear plastic bag, went back to the field, caught some of the bugs and placed the in the plastic bag along with some pieces of grass which i assumed was their food.

When I got home, I showed everyone my “treasure” but I did not get the reaction I expected. My mom said I had to let them go because I would not be able to care for them. I couldn’t understand why they weren’t as excited as I was. I watched these bugs run up and down along the walls inside the plastic bag, flying around from time to time. I was enthralled by my latest possession and didn’t heed my mother’s advice. Tired and sleepy, I put the bag of bugs somewhere no one would find it during the night and went to bed.

Waking up the next day, my first thought was about my bag of bugs. I couldn’t wait to take it out and admire my beauties. To my uttermost dismay, they all lay lifeless at the bottom of the bag. I was deeply upset. I thought I had given them everything they needed to survive: heck, there was enough food to last them a week, Or so I thought.

That day, I decided to learn more about these bugs. I learnt that they were called ladybirds or ladybugs and they do not eat grass like I thought, rather they feed on aphids that destroy plants which makes them beneficial to the ecosystem. And hence their presence on the grass. Also they need oxygen to survive, which they quickly ran out off in the plastic bag I had placed them in.

Why am I writing about ladybirds?

Some of us are like this beautiful creatures. Beautiful inside and out, always eager to help others. But some people only see us as something good to have around. They do not realize our full potential and even though we have so much good to offer, they only see something good to look at. They show us off and brag about us to their friends but that’s all they do. They do very little or nothing to nurture our soul and deepen the relationship. To them, we are nothing but a prize to be admired. So they stifle us by the confinement of the expectations they have of us.

So, dear ladybird, set yourself free. Spread your wings and fly. Live to your full potential. You are more than a showpiece. You were created for great things, You were created for impact.

Shine baby, shine.

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