JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools

pictures and stories from the water’s edge

JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools header image 2

Caterpillar epiphany

September 23rd, 2003 · 1 Comment

While I was weeding on Sunday, I found a caterpillar, a cute one at that, with fuzzy teddy bear brown fur. I gave it to Abigail and immediately she put it in her Bug Hut , with a foam sheet she’d found floating around our hillside. I think she thought the bug would like a blanket.

Yet, almost immediately she also became disappointed with her pet.
“All it does is poop and poop!” she’d cry in frustration, watching the creature and looking at the soils it left on her treasured white foam sheet.
“Welcome to the world of parenting, ” I was tempted to say to her with a smile. But I kept quiet.

We have not had a good track record with such pets. The last one like that had drowned itself in a jar lid filled with water. So I was reluctant to try to keep this one. Instead I encouraged her to leave the Bug Hut door open, outside on the deck, so that caterpillar could leave to find food and water when necessary.

Caterpillar stayed the first night, but this morning, when we went outside, it had exited Bug Hut Hotel, leaving the empty foam sheet curled against the walls.

Although I had wanted to laugh at her complaints about caterpillar poop, or try to teach her a lesson about parenthood, pethood, or responsibility, this time I was tender. I had to have mercy on my little girl who was heartbroken by a caterpillar. I could only hug her when I saw her outside, crying.
Standing out on the deck, holding the stained sheet, Abigail sobbed:
“It’s gone and all that’s left is the poop!”

Tags: Uncategorized

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Katherine // Sep 24, 2003 at 10:28 pm

    Hysterical. I am quieting laughing so as NOT to wake up MY sleeping progeny. They have stayed for 8 years with me now…and they know how to unlock the front door.