Project 26 | Post 20 | Struggle / by Carey

The theme this week for my 20th post in my Project 26 is Struggle.

it's so hard to watch our children struggle.  So much harder than I expected before I became a mother.  My instinct is to swoop in.  Save.  Remove the pain.  Remove the suffering.  Remove the source of the struggle.  Kiss the boo-boo.  Make all well.  But I have learned that that is not always the right and loving thing to do.

Sometimes, struggle is necessary.  essential.  and without it, failure and death may result.  Those struggles bring forth strength.  Strength that is crucial to survival.  Strength that cannot be attained without enduring the struggle.

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We've raised monarch caterpillars the last two summers.  I have LOVED it.  It has been utterly fascinating to watch.  Once the metamorphosis is complete, the caterpillar has transformed into a beautiful butterfly.  But he must struggle.  It is so hard to watch the little creature wriggle and writhe once he becomes ready to break free from the chrysalis.  You want to reach in and make it easier on him.  Help break that shell free.  You must stiffle this motherly, helpful instinct.

For if you swoop in and remove the struggle, the butterfly will die.

It is through the process of that struggle that his new body becomes strong enough to live.  Strong enough to withstand the environment in which he lives.  It is through this process that he is able to pump his new lifeblood throughout his body and wings, inflating what starts out so tiny, but then becomes the most magnificent thing.

This has been the most wonderful illustration to me as a mother.  I want to make it all better for them, all the time.  But sometimes, I need to let them wriggle and writhe.  To push off the restraining outer shell, so that they can discover the true strength they hold inside.

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Please visit my lovely friend Gail Pomare, and then the rest of our group, to see her interpretation of Struggle.  I'm always amazed at the way Gail sees the world and these prompts.  I can assure you that you won't be disappointed by a visit to her blog.

I shot these with my D90 Sigma 30mm f1.4 Nikon 85mm f1.8 Nikon 50mm 1.4D