Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Lady bug, Lady bug

Last night I was doing dishes after a flurry of weight watchers cookbook creativity and I noticed a lady bug, legs up, flailing around in the dish water. I don't know what made me do it, since normally, I am a little less than altruistic to bugs, but I grabbed a spoon and scooped her (it's a "LADY" bug afterall) up and set her rightside down on the sink. I tried to blow on her to dry her off since I was not sure if bug wings retain water like people-hair...but I didn't want her to die. I watched her kind of twitch around a little, waterlogged and tenuous. I felt a little guilty for several reasons. 1. I didn't actually stop doing dishes. 2. I didn't think, if I had just had a near death experience that I would like to have someone leaning over me watching my life struggle. 3. I probably could have done more. I think she died, I havne't gone back to the sink since the dishes were done. I don't want to know.

I have a sort of sick affinity for lady bugs ever since I lived in South Carolina and had an existential moment in my attic bedroom watching what seemed like thousands of red and black dotted wings flying around the ceiling trying fruitlessly to mate with the bare lighbulb. I got their futility. I understood that feeling of bareness. I felt that heat that kills eminating from a need or a want that will never be filled. In short, I felt connected to their mating dance aimed at a false idea. That's me.

So you might be able to see why I had such a bizarre reaction to a drowning bug. Maybe this is a repetitive metaphor...lady bug death as a representation of my emotional state. Today I am drowning, flailing in soapy water that is supposed to clean not kill. Once again taken in by shiny objects only to find myself face down and stuck. I want flight. Everyone else is moving...London, New York, St Louis (ok, the list gets progressively less exotic, but it doesn't matter, it's movement, damnit!!!)...I'm in a pool of dishwater, trying to make my wings work.

When I moved to Salt Lake City, it was a miracle...things conspiring, congealing in a way that I didn't think possible to make me believe this was meant to be. Maybe it was childlike, but I could not escape the hand of God everywhere I looked. I think I need to rediscover that wonder. I have purpose here...it's not like my life is completely shiftless...I just don't have the wide eyes of amazement right now. And maybe there is a hand with a spoon willing to scoop me out of the dishwater if I just stop struggling long enough to allow that sort of salvation.

3 comments:

Kirsten J said...

You could very well be drowning in this city of the dirty lake, but not because you're weak or empty, and I don't think what you're doing is drowning. I think you're too big a fish for this dirty lake! Not that you should leave. Please don't leave. I just think you should go through life thinking that you're better than everyone here. That's all. I'm not kidding. We had a meeting the other day and had a very serious discussion about finding a new Ninny Beth [except your real name was used]. Evidently it has become a new position. I think the official job description is "life of the party." I'm not even close to kidding! I thought, "I wish that somewhere someone was saying something that cool about me." We're desperate without you on the council. Not that this is even relevant to the lady bug thing but i just thought I'd relay that to you. XOXO, kir.

Ninny Beth said...

aw kir...that's so sweet. I wish I could still be that on the council...it just seemed that I was growing out of love with being involved...not because I don't love you all. You know how it is. I've gotten more involved with work and my pretend boyfriends. I still want to be invited to all the parties!!!!

lovestrong said...

This is beautiful Ninny. And I love your blog almost as much as I love you.