My Life as a Butterfly 

The little white butterflies are flitting around the house and gardens at this time of year.  They look so carefree and beautiful as I watch them go from blossom to blossom and then chase each other in that intricate and delicate courtship dance.

They look so fragile and yet often in winds or breezes far stronger than you think they could manage to hold on to their path; they swoop backwards, forwards and sideways until they get to their destination.

Are they are as carefree as they look?  I really don’t know if any one has actually had success in checking this fact out with the butterflies or; if they have, can anyone of us understand the answer?

I would like to think that their short lives are fulfilling and bright in butterfly terms and that the only ups and downs they deal with are their fluttering from point to point in the garden.

As I look at them though the window – how I sometimes envy them.  To lift to the heavens as they do, effortlessly and easily, but without the anticipated crash landing at the end that I expect.

I love to remember flying on my butterfly wings of hypomania.  I felt the invincibility and boundless optimism and opportunities expanding before me. There was nothing that I could not accomplish, physically or mentally, I knew that I had the abilities to take me to the top of anything that I wanted or desired to do.

Even if others did not quite see things my way – who was to blame for their innate idiocy in not being able to keep up with the program – if you know  what I mean?

Now that my moments of hypomania are much fewer and far between than they used to be, perhaps I can be forgiven for seeing them in a more tolerant light than those around me who had to put up with my soaring ideas at the time.

The real truth is that while I did attempt, and in my own mind succeed, in flying like a butterfly.  My landings were much more like a Goony bird hitting the deck; hard, fast and not very gracefully. This was followed by the struggle to get myself off the floor as the inevitable depressive backlash hit with a vengeance.

So if I look out that window again and cast an envious glance at those butterflies and with a small tear in my eyes remember my soaring with the butterflies.  I am sure you will understand.

You will won’t you.

Graham Brown

2 April 2006

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