If a caterpillar could talk

(c) Brook

(c) Brook

Ever get the feeling of butterflies in your stomach? Ever wondered where that phrase came from? And do you think that’s how it would really feel if butterflies were fluttering around in your stomach?

What is it? According to medical research, the term describes the physical sensation in the stomach, caused by a reduction of blood flow to the organ. It could be a result of the ‘fight or flight’ response which causes increased heart rate and blood pressure, consequently sending more blood to the muscles. So in other words, what’s really going on is that you are experiencing a reaction to stress.

(c) Natasha Mileshina

(c) Natasha Mileshina

Whether you’re thinking about an exam you have in half an hour, getting ready to go to your graduation or the fact you’re standing near someone you like and don’t know what to say, your body reacts in a way that makes you feel like you have butterflies in your tummy. I guess it’s a nice metaphor to use. Butterflies are pretty.

But they didn’t always used to be pretty. They started out as caterpillars. And to me, even though they’re not as nice to look at, a caterpillar is more intriguing than a butterfly.

I mean, a caterpillar is like an eating machine. Put it on a food plant and it will devour the plant and grow bigger. Remember The Hungry Caterpillar? What a classic!

I’ve always wondered what a caterpillar would say if they could talk.

When I searched the term “if caterpillars could talk” I came across a post by Atheism and the City that I thought was interesting…

If caterpillars could talk, would they argue against the cocoon-of-the-gaps with their butterfly friends?

Presumably, if caterpillars had enough intelligence to talk, they’d figure out science and answer this question using the scientific method. They’d be able to observe other caterpillars cocooning themselves after some honest inquiry and not need to resort to fantasy tales of magic. Although, they might have to all suffer intellectually through many years of ignorance until they figured this out, just like how we did.

I found it interesting not only because I was surprised to see someone else ask “if caterpillars could talk” but also because I questioned whether or not they too would look at other caterpillars cocooning themselves.

(c) FromSandToGlass

(c) FromSandToGlass

What I find sad about caterpillars, maybe because I can relate to them (I’ll explain why) is that most of them don’t have a choice in turning into a butterfly. What if they wanted to stay as a caterpillar? Why do they have to change?

I imagine a caterpillar to have the voice of a child. Children wander along in life with no bigger a worry than that of which crayon they’re going to pick, or which superhero they want to be. We don’t have a choice in growing up.

I know I sound stubborn and ridiculous but I just wish sometimes I could go back to being a child. I don’t like change (as we all know). Being a child, you didn’t have to worry about relationships, money, food, weight, keeping people happy, work and promotions. If a caterpillar could talk would it voice the same concerns?

Caterpillars are the eating and growing stage for the butterfly, but they cannot mate and reproduce. The adult butterfly is both the mating and egg-laying stage of the beautiful insect. See…nothing to worry about when they’re young apart from eating, it’s when you grow up ‘into a butterfly’ that you need to face reality.

(c) marie-ll

(c) marie-ll

It’s the whole learning curve of growing up. When I was younger I always thought that I’d be married by the age of 21, have kids by 24 and have a good career by 25. I’m now in my mid-20s when I ‘should’ have all of those three things ticked off, but truth be told, I’m scared because that would mean I’m an adult.

Is anyone else scared of growing up?


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