yellow moth on the surface of a piece of wood furnitureI have been single-mindedly plowing through putting good finishes on all of our box store “exotic wood” and our flat box but quality unfinished furniture. The work is going well and the results pleasing to us. My spouse, upon seeing the dinning room table set up with our new-to-us old Queen Ann style chairs commented, “it is good. It looks like it is supposed to look.”

Without the fire as our history and this as our permanent replacement home–our forever home as our friend Kate has called it–putting new furniture in place and having someone give a lackluster, “It looks like it is supposed to look,” might be less than a positive statement. With our history, it was music to my ears. I had achieved what I set out to achieve, make our lives feel like they were supposed to.

After the fire our lives were lived in reaction to what was around us. Rarely did we set the actions in motion, we were rushing to try to keep up with what was happening to us. We had so many domains to address, not the least of which was the very human emotional one.

Our decision to retire and move to Montana was one of the few things we were totally in charge of. Curiously, that life decision was easy. Once done, everything related to making the transition went easily. Having been retired for just over a year now it is hard to look backwards and remember what life was like before. Our life now suits us well. My grinding battle with chronic respiratory viruses has all but stopped. My spouse still awakens too early in the morning but some mornings I rouse to find out that he is still sleeping like he is supposed to be.

Day before yesterday I had all 26 parts of a large hutch I am finishing spread out across one quadrant of the living and dining room. The back of the hutch is comprised of three very large sections of high-quality plywood. I had the plywood finished and sitting against the wall drying. I looked over and found a moth one of them. In 6 hours it had turned just 260 degrees and moved zero degrees off of its X, Y position. When I took this photo I was inches away from the moth. It stayed all day and well into the night of the next day. This morning when I went to work on the furniture I noticed the moth was gone.

I looked up the symbolism of the moth. I don’t take the whole spirit animal thing literally but symbols are powerful to us humans and since the moth stayed with me for so long, even when I bumped into the wood and once when I moved it, I thought it would be interesting to think on.

I learned the moth is a nocturnal creature which could explain why it hung out on my furniture for the day hardly moving. It seems that moths navigate by lunar light and in the absence of the moon seek guidance from any light source. They are doggedly persist in trying to reach their lunar light goal which is why they fly, headlong, over and over into artificial light. Symbolically a moth appearing in your dreams or waking life suggests that you examine your course. Today as I rubbed the finish on the furniture, I considered what that moth might mean. Its lesson for me, I think, it is less examine your course for adjustment as much as it is notice your course.

I am so committed to making things right for the co-travelers in my life that sometimes I forget to notice my own path. Usually it is running parallel with the others in my life but sometimes, like today, it is good for me to recognize that I don’t need to keep trying to make it right for us in this new life after the fire. I already have.