First, Crawl

12:51 am

All the flowers of tomorrow are in the seeds of today.
-Nature studies in Watercolor-

A caterpillar is sheltered within a beautiful, glass-like intricate egg which shatters and releases a delicate looking creature with a pair of eyes and several feet. The first crack is followed by the emergence of a tiny head that is adorned with two dainty round eyes that absorb and reflect the pleasing atmosphere of an unseen, almost magical outer world.

The worm pushes and pushes with a tingly sensation in its feet, moving each muscle in succession. The entire process of breaking out resembles that of stepping out from darkness into a life filled with fantasy and color. The caterpillar goes up and down and around, almost as if its feet are celebrating their freedom and the feel of new ground. Then one day, the caterpillar grows old, almost ready to die. The irony of this despairing sad state is that the caterpillar's body is actually preparing for wings.

The reason this short story matters is because one day, in your life, a time will come for you to break out and experience a new world. For me, this time came several times- in school, in college and in choosing my career although I'm still looking and exploring. The start of anything new, the mere inauguration of the many firsts in your life is going to make you step into a new zone.

Like a caterpillar, the start is always a slow move into something extraordinary. For me, picking up the pencil and slowly graduating to paints and brushes is among the few things that has helped change my life in ways I hadn't even imagined. The start was marked by line drawings of lions, triangles and flowers and cotton snowmen. Over ten years later, I was able to appear at my first national art competition where I returned without a prize, however, any start paves a way for learning, and a great one, because the next year, I returned, having won four prizes.

The start may be slow, rocky, consistent or in a few rare cases, speedy but you can't fly over any mountain till you become fit to grow wings. Don't make speed your best friend; let the quality of your work be the partner that speaks for itself. Pick up your pen, wear your dancing shoes or read more books- do whatever it takes to mark a start. The beauty of all living things lies in the journey that marks their development from scratch.

Like so many others, I too, have been crawling, learning and developing. Somewhere, wings await me eagerly.

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