Lessons From a Butterfly

Oh, how it feels good to feel good again.

I have found myself in a sudden seasonal shift in my heart and soul, and I feel like I have returned to myself again.

I missed her.

The sunshine-chasing, sun dress flowing, flowers in hand and hair version of myself.

It felt so liberating to shed the dark, heavy winter behind me, and focus on what’s in front of me.

Sunsets at 9pm.
Croissants under the sun.
Ice cream after dinner.
Strolling through blossoming neighbourhoods.
Perfume lingering in the summer air.
Getting dressed up again.
In-person celebrations again.
Date night on twinkling patios again.
Dreaming again.

This is me intentionally stopping. This is me taking stock of how I am feeling, what I’ve been learning, and cherishing what has been making me smile lately. This is me documenting the seasonal shifts happening in this period of life that I’m in.

And I’ll tell you what inspired me put these feelings into words.

A butterfly.

I recently visited the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory, and I have taken notes of what I learned from our metamorphous friends.

Just like butterflies, I have recently been accepting that we are cyclical and seasonal beings.

I am now acknowledging that we go through cycles within a week or a month or a season, and that has taught me to release the pressure I put on myself to always remain constant. The constant need to be energetic, productive, motivated, enthused or even happy all the time goes against the ebbs and flows of our cyclical nature. Butterflies taught me that it’s natural to embrace all phases.

We should embrace moments of sorrow, numbness, boredom, and feeling lost or trapped. If we allow these moments, rather than avoid them, they prove to be necessary to our growth.

Cycles remind me that is a time to rest and evaluate, and there is a time to soar.

The seasonal version of ourselves is the one that resonates with me the most, because I feel that is the type of self-evolution I am the most in tune with (and what I write the most about in this blog).

The person we were in a previous season, and even more so, the person we were before the pandemic, is a past version of ourselves. A version of ourselves that we should still honour, appreciate, be thankful for and even miss. A version of ourselves that may even come back, but hopefully wiser and kinder.

Butterflies reminded me that the past version of ourselves is necessary to our current growth. So are the pain and struggles that come along with it.

But it also made me appreciate this: if we are meant to inevitably grow, evolve, learn and heal, then I think we should be more intentional in being present.

More intentional and aware in who we are in this moment. Because this version of ourselves will change and evolve eventually.

So what does our present self have to say? What is our present self feeling? What is our present self learning?

This is me documenting how I am enjoying this version of myself in this season.

The me, now.

Solar charged.
More accepting of my plumper curves.
Letting go of perfection.
Healing my inner child.
Accepting that two extremes can coexist.
Staying curious.
Eternally grateful for health.
In love with love. The love I share with my husband, my family and my friends.
The first sip of coffee on a sleepy Sunday morning.
The sun, the moon, the flowers and the cotton candy clouds.

Taking in all that magic….and finding ways to output it back into the world, in hopes that it touches someone else’s heart.

Through my lens, I hope you see something that speaks to you, too.

Flower Markets

A sea of peonies at the Toronto Flower Market
Beautiful shop sign at the Toronto Flower Market
Fragrant lavender from Purple Hill Lavender
Loved these cotton candy peonies
One of the bouquets I picked up from La Primavera Farms at the Toronto Flower Market. The daisy made me smile.

Memorable Meals

Herbal tea and cardamom knots on French blue toile
Lebanese brunch at my parents’ with their fresh basil
Elegant and delicious date night at Lapinou in Downtown Toronto
A bowl of fresh berries, Greek yogurt, almonds and Lebanese honey on a quiet Friday morning.
One of our many weekend brunches at home. Avocado toast, scrambled eggs and raspberry danishes. And lots of coffee.
Finnish brunch at my in-laws. Delicious smoked salmon, rye bread, butter, onions, fresh dill. You can also spot some labneh – my Mother in Law makes that following my Dad’s recipe. A perfect blend of Finnish and Lebanese cuisine.
Our favourite type of Sundays: pancakes and strawberries.

The city in bloom

An average Tuesday evening sprinkled with a little magic from the sunset and yellow petals.
Crescent moon and cherry blossoms.
We found a secret spot with cherry blossoms and it felt like we found gold.
I learned that these flowers are called lupins, and they are just so whimsical. I love how they matched the lavender-blue sky that evening.
Sun soaked wildflowers remind me of myself.

Butterfly Conservatory

The purple flowers on this white sheer sleeve reminded me so much of my Mom’s wedding dress. The dress is from Aritzia, the purse is from H&M and the butterfly clips are from Sugar Lily Shop.
Whimsical corner at the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory

I felt like the pictures did not do this butterfly visit justice since the fluttering of butterflies dancing around us don’t capture well in photos, so I am sharing the reel I created to re-capture the feeling here.

What shift do you recognize in yourself this season?

What brings you contentedness?

What brings you pain?

What do you want to leave behind?

Whatever it is, I hope it makes your heart feel what it’s meant to feel in this moment.

New journal, new thoughts, heart released.
Sunburst petals
Candlelit petals
Preserved petals

xo šŸ’› āœØ

4 responses to “Lessons From a Butterfly”

  1. Beautiful post, Nahya!

    1. Thank you, Dini! It is so, so nice to hear from you here! ā¤ļø Hope you are well. Sending you big hugs. xo

  2. The photos are spectacular and the words sublime!

    1. Thank you so much, Julie! šŸ™‚

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