Different bugs react differently to my efforts. Some curl up in a ball, some scurry as fast as their hundreds of legs will carry them, some put their unborn baby sack on their back and move away as quickly and carefully as possible.
Ants are different. These creatures move strategically to a new shared space in a coordinated set of moves that is completely mesmerizing, until the ones that have been sent to bite you do so. Ant trances are broken by their surprisingly painful bites.
I don't mean to break up homes, or kill things, but that is what I end up doing, and as there is nothing else going on in my mind while I am gardening, this leaves me to wondering.
I don't believe in much, except for that which I feel and know to be true. Not scientifically, of course. I don't trust a process where the scientist must leave the laboratory in order to not alter the outcome, or where a placebo is just as effective as the substance being tested. No, I trust my gut. I trust my feelings. They are linked so it is easy to read them simultaneously.
LIke the bugs I accidentally dig up every day, I have left so many homes. Places I loved at one point became unlivable by the time I was finished. I left all five quadrants of Portland, Oregon at least once, and each time, it was with haste. I have left many places in Bellingham as well, and my home in River Forest? A sling shot would have been a slower form of movement compared to how quickly I got out of there.
No one was digging me out though.
Well, maybe that isn't true, and as I write this, I wonder, was I not digging myself out? Was I not growing past what seemed a perfectly agreeable situation initially, to find myself in a position where I required a new living situation immediately?
Now that I am not actually gardening, I have time to wonder. How do I define home as I slough off the layers of skin that have grown itchy and tight? Why does it seem that I have the need to break free, almost violently, of any living situation that seemed so much better than the last one, whatever that might have been?
Ants coordinate their efforts amongst themselves and move as a single organism toward whatever goal on which they are focused. I had never really taken the time to watch ants before I had accidentally broken up a home the other day in front of a Doctor's office, but I am now in the beginning stages of moving out of a storage space and into a trailer, and I have to wonder if I am not just accumulating situation through which to grow so that I can eventually leave them.
I have to wonder if I, a single creature, will ever be as well coordinated as a swarm of ants?
It is fascinating the things I set my mind to, and how they always lead back to trying to figure out my own behavior. But, if that is not what life is for, that is, making a metaphor for my life out of every tiny detail of the world I encounter, then I don't know what is.
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