|Photo courtesy of Shanna Murray. The proceeds from the sales of these gorgeous decals go to support Japan.|
Quote from Mother Teresa
Before I share how to create the butterflies, I hope you'll bear with me as I share with you why I chose to make them and its significance to me. Butterflies have always been a symbol of hope and new life. And for me, they have always represented something beautiful blossoming out of something not so beautiful (no offense to those who happen to think caterpillars are gorgeous creatures). Beauty can be found, even in the midst of ugliness and the mess of life.
So what beauty could possibly come out of the devastation and tragedy that occurred in Japan? Well, what I've witnessed in the past couple weeks is complete strangers rallying together to come to the aid of other strangers. I've seen everyone tweeting, blogging, facebooking, emailing, and doing whatever they can to help in the small ways that they can. Compassion is not lost on us.
It reminded me so much of the response after 9/11. I had just moved from D.C. to the New York area the month prior. I didn't know anyone, and I didn't even have a steady job. I was temping as a receptionist at the time. On the morning of September 11, 2001, I had reported bright and early to a job at an architectural firm located in midtown Manhattan. Half an hour later with the first plane crash, the world had changed. I still remember the events of that day very clearly (I have an online journal entry with updates as the day occurred). The horror of what took place that morning shook and shattered my soul. I remember walking out into the streets a couple hours after the World Towers collapsed and being assaulted by the sound of sirens and the wretched smell of smoke and ashes. I saw people running in every direction, some covered in soot. There were others desperately and frantically trying to make phone calls, but the lines were all jammed. Unbeknownst to me at the time, my husband-to-be worked on Wall Street. God spared his life. But others I know lost loved ones that day.
Knowing I wouldn't be able to get over the bridge or through the tunnel to get home that day, the office manager was kind enough to offer her place to me. I had never met her until that morning. I was a stranger to her, and yet she opened up her home to me. That day, we weren't strangers. We weren't a part of the rat race pushing and shoving to be first. We weren't tough, hard ass New Yorkers. She wasn't Jewish, and I wasn't Korean-American. That day, we were all just human crying out and caring for our fellow brothers and sisters.
I saw this again in the aftermath of Japan's earthquake and tsunami. Complete strangers of every background from every nation working together for a common good. Compassion, kindness, love, and generosity being demonstrated in the face of such devastation.
|Image courtesy of NYC Bake Sale for Japan organizer and friend, Lillian|
That's the beauty that rises from the mess and ugliness of life. That's hope. For us and for Japan.
And that's how the butterflies came to life.