This article is great! The writing of the firefly metaphor really connected with me as a teacher and a child who used to be a firefly. I was shy and in the background throughout elementary and middle school – I look for these types of students to befriend and make sure they are not being made fun of because it can cause emotional damage. This piece should be read in some of my master’s classes along with the bullying videos we watch. I feel really moved after reading this!
“What’s your favorite insect?” my seven-year-old daughter asked as we took an evening walk on the first night of her spring vacation.
“You can’t pick butterfly. Everyone picks the butterfly,” she quickly added before I had a chance to respond.
“Hmmmm,” I thought out loud. “I guess mine would have to be a ladybug,” I finally answered.
“Mine’s a firefly. I love the firefly,” she said wistfully.
We kept walking. Talking. Enjoying the rare treat of alone time—just my younger daughter and me.
“Am I okay? I mean, am I fine?” she asked looking down at herself. “Sometimes I feel different.”
I immediately stopped walking and searched her face. Without saying what she meant, I knew; I just knew.
I bent down and spoke from a painful memory tucked away since second grade. “When I was your age. I felt different too. I felt uncomfortable, self conscious. One…
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