There comes a time when one must grow by questioning the notions that once made them feel safe.
Perhaps everyone who is learning how to fall in love needs to understand a few things about the crane fly.
The Crane Fly
The crane fly doesn't suck or bite.
They, like us, just seek the light.
It was a warm Los Angeles evening. While I was sitting on the floor of my bedroom,
a crane fly landed on my bookshelf. My reaction seems to progress in exactly the same way every single time I see one of these things: "Ack! What's that scary! Daddy long legs! It has wings! Giant mosquito! Kill ittt! No. Wait. These guys eat mosquitos I think. You are my hero. You shall pass."
At this point, I find it worthy of mention that when I get bitten by any bug, a large welt appears on my skin and lasts for weeks. Multiple welts can look severe and a bunch of them grouped together gets really uncomfortable. Even after over a decade of a steady meditation practice, it was a few summers ago in Florida where I truly found the practice of transcendence and lucid dreaming in an attempt to stay sane from the multitude of bug bites I received. They come after me like I have key-to-the-survival-of-their-species-fairy-blood. Apparently, I'm a walking delicate flower: I run warm, my skin is more sensitive than most, and my kaphic fascial body is somewhere between endomorph and mesomorph. In other words, I probably light up like a squishy ultraviolet bag of honey in their eyes. So you must understand, anything rumored to eat up my potential assailants in the wheel of life are a welcome sight.
That evening, after what I thought was my champion animal had arrived, I decided to do some fact checking about the crane fly. After all, I was only repeating in my mind what other people had told me on previous warm Los Angeles nights to put me at ease.
It turns out that the crane fly is anatomically incapable of killing or consuming other insects; the impression some of us had about it being a mosquito assassin is false. They are valuable and interesting in other ways. In its lifetime, the crane fly larvae provides nourishment for soil and food for other creatures like frogs and trout. The females have a steady and straight flight pattern, while the males fly in a way that looks very bumbly, they weave, spiral and swirl toward the nearest light source. These few facts merely scrape the surface about this creature.
And there you have it. My illusion of safety about the said mosquito hawk was broken. That night, my ignorance was debunked and I learned the truth about an animal I thought was here to save me. I proceeded to fall down the internet rabbit hole, surfing through pictures, perusing more factoids, and article after article, finding myself relating to this living thing that was now valuable to me even after I had stripped away my expectations of it, which ended up being false anyway.
The crane fly experience reminded me about dating in LA and how I used to be.
Funny how when we learn new truths about other people (or even ourselves), we tend to go through a rollercoaster of feelings: shock, surprise, or being let down, and use them as a gateway to feed our micro-fears. Today, I believe the truth isn't celebrated enough and being afraid of the truth makes it difficult to fall in love, especially in Los Angeles. It gets dangerous and messy when we are only enchanted by the billboard versions of things, or the digital package that people are willing to present. A cup of shock from time to time is a great thing; it means we're growing and that we've opened our eyes enough to be more courageous and wise. We must learn about the things that make us uncomfortable and let go of popular ideas that make us feel safe in order to really open ourselves to the force of love. Now I consider the crane fly to be one of my most important teachers. We live in a wonderful time when information is easy to gather these days. The rest is up to us.