Bumblebee Lessons

People often ask why I believe as I do. How, or why, I believe the earth and all that lives on it can speak to us … teaching us what we need to know, and oftentimes pointing the way to something better. Perhaps a story will help …

view from dock Paul SmithsAs I posted on Friday, there were a few days last month that held a number of challenges … surprises and unexpected forks in the road. Challenges that shook me and put the next few stops of the journey in disarray. I was running fast on little sleep, and unforeseen expenditures & cancellations left me sitting silently on a dock at Paul Smith’s College – having been invited to crash with a friend in a small shared room during her class reunion weekend. I sat facing the warm sun, letting its sweetness wash over me as my toes enjoyed a morning splash in the lake. I needed the peace, and I needed to understand what had happened. Watching the sparkles dance along the shoreline, my eyes caught something odd in the waters … something that didn’t belong among the bits of wood and green leaves that toes in water Paul Smith'smoved with the tides … the stripes of a fat, fuzzy bumblebee. My heart broke and tears stung my eyes as he silently floated by my feet, pulled quickly past the shore by the waves … lifeless, it only added more grief to the challenges of the days before. But … wait … suddenly the tiny legs started to move, kicking every which-way, desperately trying to find something solid. Grabbing the purple dollar-store flip-flops I’d left on the dock, jumping into the lake, wading out to where he struggled: A flip on one side, a flop on the other – the spot where my heel left a little depression made for an easy scoop. Carrying him back to shore, I emptied the sandal of the remaining water and gently set him in the sun. Had I found him in time? Would he live? I waited and watched.

15 minutes later, dry and warm, he flew away, happily buzzing around my head before heading to a patch of blossoming clover.

wet bumblebee - Paul Smith's

It is said that the message of the bumblebee is to keep one’s eyes forward … not to worry about all that is going on around you, but simply work on what is in front of you now – like the bee who calmly goes from flower to flower in search of nectar – and in doing so, everything else will fall into place as it should. You see, the bee doesn’t fret about the future or what will happen, he simply does his job, and as he does, flowers are pollenated, honey is made and hives are replenished every day. That morning, I listened … and later that day, not only did I receive an invitation to stay at a home with a private room and bath – and all the privacy I needed to heal and write – but also, the following days proved to be some of the most amazingly wonderful and loving that I have experienced so far on this journey.

Life is here to teach us … we only need open our hearts and minds to listen. Lessons can come in many ways – sometimes through challenges and sometimes through the simple buzz of a bumblebee’s wings.


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