As I climbed Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road, suddenly I heard a small voice screaming from below! I looked down and realized I’d almost stepped on a panic stricken caterpillar. I had to apologize!
Caterpillar! I’m so sorry!
CATERPILLAR: You almost gave me a heart attack!
I didn’t see you there!
CATERPILLAR: That’s what they all say.
Seriously! Are you okay?
CATERPILLAR: As okay as I’m gonna get right now. I’ve got bigger problems.
CATERPILLAR: Like, I’ve been putting off going in a cocoon until the last possible minute. I’m claustrophobic. But now the time has come.
I feel your pain. I’m claustrophobic, too.
Yeah. I don’t do elevators, tunnels, airplanes, MRIs…whenever I can avoid them.
CATERPILLAR: Well I can’t avoid going in my cocoon anymore. I’m exhausted all the time. I’m always starving and stuffing my face with leaves. I’m not the caterpillar I used to be. Every part of my body is telling me this part of my life is over.
So, before you go in your cocoon, why don’t you take a Xanax? Or have a glass of wine? I have a glass when I take short plane flights. It takes the edge off for a few hours.
CATERPILLAR: We’re not talking hours here, we’re talking weeks.
Well, at least you only have to go in your cocoon one time. Then it’s over! And you’ll be able to fly! Don’t you want to fly?
CATERPILLAR: No. I love crawling. I don’t want to give up my feet.
I hear ya.
CATERIPLLAR: And I don’t want this part of my life to be over.
I know!!!! I have two kids and I loved bringing them up. But they’ve grown up and just left home. I don’t want this part of my life to be over either.
CATERPILLAR: We’re soulmates.
Yes. But it seems the universe is pushing us to move on. We have no choice.
CATERPILLAR: Yup. I have to fly.
I have to fly, too. I mean, my daughter lives far away now. If I’m able to get myself to sit in a plane for five hours, I can visit her a lot. And if I’m able to fly even longer, I can see so many parts of the world. I’d like that.
CATERPILLAR: Maybe flying will open new doors for me too. Maybe I’m part of something bigger that I can’t see. So, I guess I’ll take you up on that bottle of wine.
I said a GLASS…
THE FOLLOW UP:
Weeks later, the caterpillar came out of her cocoon! Though she had a major hangover…
…after a few hours she was able to fly in a straight line. And me? Well, since I’m still Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road, when I click my heels together I can visit my daughter in a flash. It works for now. But…if you’re a bad flyer too, I’d love to hear from you. What do you do on a plane to avoid jumping out of your skin?