There’s a story that I’ve often heard about love which uses the butterfly as an analogy for that love. Now that I’m older, I believe the story makes more sense. Love is beautiful and fragile, like a butterfly.
As a child I was fascinated with butterflies and thought they were one of the most gorgeous creatures. They fly so elegantly and grace nature with their bright colors and unique wing designs. When they land on a blade of grass or a flower, I like to admire those colors and patterns. Although, when I was little, I was told to be careful when touching their wings, or not to touch them at all.
Recently the story of the butterfly has come back to me. It goes like this – if we hold on to tight then we’ll crush it, but hold on to loose and it’ll fly away. Just like the wings of a butterfly can be crushed, we can also crush and smother love. At the same time, just as a butterfly will fly away, love can also leave us, but give it enough space and it can blossom and flourish.
The key seems to be finding a balance.
Within the last few weeks, I’ve been told another story which, in may ways, complements the previous one. It goes like this – if you love something, set it free. If it flies away, then, it was never yours to begin with, but if it comes back, then, it was always yours from the start.
I believe there’s both hope and risk in these words.
We could end up with nothing or everything.
Maybe the biggest risk is holding onto the fear of ending up with nothing.
Maybe the greatest form of hope and love is letting that person fly free and simply praying they’ll return.
But that’s a decision we all must make on our own.