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Almost every day, I find a spider in my house.
Or a fly, or a bee, occasionally even a bird.
When this happens, our choice of action will depend on whether we believe the creature has feelings.
While there are those who would set out to kill the intruders, I prefer the kind approach of finding a cup and a piece of paper, and helping them outside.
They usually look like, or at least they act like they feel trapped. They appear to have a sense of urgency to get through the invisible barrier of the window. I try to intervene quickly before they smash their little heads too many times against the glass.
I focus on my heart, telling them, “I’m a friend of the flies (or spiders) and I’m here to help.” I understand this sounds a little nutty, especially because most of the time, I actually say this out loud—after all, there are certain advantages to living alone.
Each rescue operation involves a contemplation of how it must seem from their perspective, and the awareness that they are so small relative to me.
I imagine their feelings of helplessness and desperation as they experience a lack of control and overwhelming inability to get where they want to go—that which they can see but not reach.
Then, this person, me, comes at them with something that leaves them feeling like they are more restricted—in fact, completely trapped. They face an absolute lack of control as I impose my will over the entirety of their being and take them outside.
But then, freedom! I watch the sheer bliss and joy as they fly up and away.
Perhaps I’m projecting a bit—I just can’t help but put myself in the shoes of the fly.
How many times over the course of my life have I felt the same as that honey bee—trapped, stuck, a lack of control? Asking, “What is the barrier that is right in front of me, which I just can’t see?” What metaphorical wall am I banging my head against with little or no progress?
I consider how I can be open and detached from judging the situation as “good” or “bad” and just allow it to be.
Then, as I’m hoping for resolution, working hard, and wishing for different circumstances, things go in exactly the opposite direction. Sometimes, it seems like what is required to get around that position of feeling stuck, ends up feeling worse before it gets better—like when we process a huge heap of emotion.
Often, someone in my life will miraculously show up out of the blue and help me navigate around the obstacle, this impossible situation that I just can’t see my way through.
Or something will present itself by coincidence that will provide the tools or the vehicle to go in a different direction, beyond the perceived obstruction.
Then the shift happens and I get beyond the window—I fly free.