Little guys need lovin’ too.

Little guys need some lovin' too...

So, I’ve been M.I.A. a little bit lately. I had my crazy night out with the girls, and then settled back down so that I could be murdered by work. I also ask you what’s white, yellow, and black all over? No, it’s not a skunk that has gotten into some mischief with some yellow paint. Or my mother wearing Zebra print with a yellow necklace. It’s a Monarch caterpillar, something I haven’t seen or dealt with for quite a while. See, I used to work at a nature center when I was younger inside of their butterfly garden. They had giant swallowtails, zebra swallowtails, and several other species of butterflies, including the Monarchs.

The swallowtail, which a certain kind actually looks like a Monarch, get aggressive when you get to close to them. Well, as aggressive as something as you can easily squish can get, right? The Monarchs are pretty laid-back because they are poisonous and don’t have too many predators. Or, well, so I thought.

I kidnapped 3 Monarch caterpillars from this nature preserve I went with with the man. He watched me as I ran from one milkweed to the next, looking underneath the leaves, on top, everywhere. I found my first one inside of a milkweed pod chewing away. Snatching the little guy up, I grabbed as many leaves as I could possibly hold. The man kept on calling to me that how many leaves could one little bug eat? Well, I knew from the nature garden, and my own rearing of caterpillars that they are eating, pooping, little monsters.

The one caterpillar multiplied into two more when I got back.I found more on the leaves that I brought home with me. A small one, like the one I found, and then an even smaller one. He hasn’t seen me with anything before, taking care of it, and constantly laughed and called me overprotective. I texted him one day to get them off the patio because it ended up raining and I didn’t want them to get too wet or drowned. It’s been like a week and I suddenly realized there are more predators, unseen ones that make their presence known and there isn’t anything you can do about it.

They were killed, two of them, by that unseen predator. A parasite that killed them and popped out Alien movie style. It was awful! I found the thing that killed the one and made sure to squish the hell out of it. Then, the other got sick the next day, same thing, so I boiled the damn thing that did it for several minutes. I never knew this could happen, and have never had it happen before when I raised them in the butterfly garden or by myself. I have one more little guy I found over by my folks place I’m taking care of. He’s tiny, not even the size of your fingernail. We can’t have pets, because he’s allergic, so this kind of gets around that.

The man keeps on telling me I will be one of those crazy overprotective mothers. I doubt it, but he still teases me about my persistence with taking care of my ‘bugs’.

Besides the caterpillars I’ve been feeling kind of unimportant lately at work. I know, I know, I just got a raise, so why would I feel that way? It’s just that I kinda feel like I don’t matter. Which may not be true, but it’s just been how I’ve been feeling. It’s that feeling of whatever I’m doing, it’s just not enough. Kind of like being burnt out, yet I think it’s more like being jaded too. Almost like I’m disconnected from people. It’s probably just a funk I need to shake off.

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