Reflecting on the journey to change is the most valuable part of the process.
Walk along the dirt road from Aguas Calientes towards the path up to Machu Picchu and you will discover a Butterfly Sanctuary hidden in the forest.
Head down a few stairs and you come across a soft-spoken gentleman behind the bar who offers to take you on a tour of the Mariposa. Follow him through a beaded curtain into a large mesh tent and you arrive into a magical little world of hundreds of butterflies & cocoons. All in different states of Chrysallis.
As the guide talks (in Spanish), you can tell he adores & respects these creatures. There is something quite extraordinary about him. For the first time in a long time, I see someone truly at peace. His job is to protect and nurture as many butterflies as he can and you can tell that this is his bliss, that he was doing what he loved.
It’s a special moment that will stick in my brain from this trip. The curious state of the kids seeing so many butterflies starting their journey into the world. The mass of cocoons nestled together. The ways in which each species used special defences to protect themselves. Whether curling up when touched, hiding under leaves or camouflaging themselves, every effort was made to ensure they wouldn’t get hurt in the process.
It was a small tour and as we were about to leave, something called us to go into a room that was painted throughout with fun facts on butterflies. It was here I came across a mural depicting the transformation of a butterfly as the symbolism for human life.
As simply as it was laid out, the complex nature of humans was detailed in the exact same way a butterfly transforms from a caterpillar. We found it fascinating. Whether it’s reflecting on our life in its entirety, a goal, a resolution, a business idea, or whatever we decide to focus on, it all fits the same process.
First – The Larva
It starts with birth, an idea, the beginning of something fresh, something possible.
Next – The Caterpillar
It changes to movement, action, manifesting the idea, undertaking the necessary steps to make it happen. To make it to the goal.
Then – The Cocoon
Looking inward. Finding time for introspection and reflection. Seeking the space and the quiet to think about everything we have accomplished in this journey.
Finally – The Butterfly
The re-birth. The transformation. Release. Freedom. Strength. Courage.
The moment we recognize that we are different, that we have changed.
It’s such a beautiful metaphor for what we go through isn’t it? Especially when we get to our goal.
And then at the very bottom, the smallest part of the mural had the biggest impact on me.
Along the life we change. Learn how to enjoy each transformation.
Let’s be honest.
We SUCK THE BIG ONE at the whole introspective, reflection piece that comes with accomplishment.
We have become a society of busy people, of doers, the concept of taking time to be be quiet no longer fits in our vocabulary. We have forgotten how to enjoy or embrace all the parts of the journey that leads to our transformations. How to be still for a moment and recognize the change.
This is where the universe comes in to play a role. “The universe” for me is that spiritual messenger that intervenes when you totally don’t think you need it but then realize after, you totally do. When you need to be quiet, it shuts you down. Its in the moments when you feel like you can hardly handle another thing and you get a cold. The moment when your body is physically required to be still in order to recoup. It CREATES moments of quiet for you when you need it most.
So hurried are we to get to our goal/destination that we forget its looking back at our path & how we got here that really is the best part.
It teaches us who we are. It shows our strength and determination. How far we’ve come. What we can achieve when we put our minds to it. The leaps of faith we have taken.
We have asked ourselves a few times on this trip, what we think we are going to change in to. We realize now its about embracing all the moments in between that will be the most important. Grateful for everything we are experiencing. THAT will truly be our change.
This year, don’t forget to take the time to reflect on where you’ve been and where you are.
You rock. You are making shit happen. Embrace all those moments, find the joy in your journey, the why’s, the how’s, the courage and strides you have taken.
Because THEN you will become the MOST BEAUTIFUL BUTTERFLY.
Chris, Jenn, Spencer and Lauren are a family from Canada on a trip around the world to live life to its fullest. Their goal is to push boundaries, connect with nature, meet people, learn of new places & teach their kids to become global citizens.