Already a Butterfly

Several weeks ago my little two-year-old daughter was playing with her toys and decided to strap on her butterfly wings. She was having a pretty good time for a while, until she got further down in the toy box and found her purple superhero cape. She wanted to put it on. When my husband tried to convince her to take off the wings, she refused. So he Velcroed the cape on right over the wings. It was awkward. She yanked on it for a while to keep it from being so jagged, but she looked like a crooked purple hunchback. She tried to go with it for as long as she could, but pretty soon she flew back over to us and uttered a very profound truth. I only wish I could remember her exact toddler jargon for this. But essentially, she said, "No cape. Alrey butterfly."

Think about it. You don't need a cape if you're already a butterfly! The moment I heard her say it, I knew it meant something. But it has taken a little bit of time for the meaning to unfold for me. I spend a lot of time—too much time, really—trying to fit into a cape. I see my neighbor in a beautiful cape, making incredible gourmet dinners with vegetables from her backyard. It's usually on a day I hardly had time to pick up a pizza. I see songwriting friends writing songs I truly wish I had written. They're so good. I see their capes billowing in the wind. I go to the mall to try to find something that can make me look amazing—and then I notice the ridiculous price tag. Capes I can't afford. I get discouraged.

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