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  • Writer's pictureLaura Kustaborder

Embrace The Molt

Change isn’t easy. It can be a frustrating, difficult, painful and lengthy process.

Recently nature reminded me how much work is required for change.

As I wandered out to the mailbox, I saw a carpenter bee violently shaking itself on a stalk of my lavender plant. At first, I thought I stumbled upon some really aggressive mating behavior, watching what looked like two intimately connected bees thrusting on the plant. I also noticed a large bee hovering back and forth in mid air, keeping watch over the whole scene.

Was I witnessing a bee threesome? Was I interrupting a private mating moment of bees?

After several minutes of confusion and awe, I realized the thrashing bee was actually molting.

It meticulously climbed up the stalk, scraping itself through the leaves in an attempt to pull off its old self. At times it would lose its balance, plummeting through the stems until a cluster of leaves broke its fall. A few times it fell the whole way to the ground.

The bee allowed itself a brief rest after each abrupt descent then started over again.

Persistent. Patient. Ready to become new. Not willing to stay in its old shell.

The levitating bee stayed close, kept watch and buzzed me when I got too close.

It was an incredible thing to witness and even after 30 minutes, the molting bee still had not emerged into its new form.

Change takes time. We cannot evolve overnight. We cannot shed our old layers without work.

Trying to change a habit, behavior, or pattern requires our ability to navigate the hurdles, be patient and keep going.

Logically we all know this but it's a lesson we easily forget. We want immediacy. We don’t want to wait for results or answers. We want fast and easy. Our culture has fueled this need for immediate results and has made it an unspeakable action or character flaw to even talk about needing the time and space required for change.

Change is a process regardless of how much we want it, force it or obsess over it.

How can we navigate the difficulties of change and accomplish our goal?

First, we need to acknowledge that our life experiences are made up of deeply rooted patterns and habits. We need to look deep inside and assess our beliefs, thoughts and previous failed results.

We also need to examine things closely enough to recognize that a change is needed. We have learned how to push difficult thoughts and feelings away, living in denial and lack awareness of our truth and purpose.

By taking this deep look inside, untangling the stories interwoven with emotion and facing the challenges we can begin to see with clarity.

Like the carpenter bee, it won’t be easy and it won’t be fast. It can be difficult to tease through the layers with an open mind but persistence pays off.

Allow yourself to fall down and get back up. Scrape yourself against the branches of life and grow into the newness you’re meant to become. Embrace the molt. Leave that old skin behind and move forward.

You deserve it.

Bee well :)

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