Rosie Umstattd – The Butterfly

I know Rosie Umstattd since 2005. We first met on and she was part of the hosting team in my group, Positive Thinking. We kept in touch ever since, and despite the fact that we never met in real life, she is one of my closest long-lasting friends.

It recently got the news that Rosie wrote a book about her life – The (Almost) Last of the Red Hot Polio People? For me, it is a great honor to advertise her book on my blog and invite you to take a look at her description and maybe be curious to read it. Knowing Rosie, I’m sure that it’s a balanced and insightful writing. You can read more about the book following the link below:

The book is also available on

Rosie’s blog:
Rosie’s Twitter:

Today I allow my friend Rosie to inspire you with one of her stories – she is my first guest writer on this blog. I also encourage the others to be creative and send me articles. I’d be delighted to publish them on my website, as it’s not only my space but also my friends’ space. English, Romanian and French are accepted for now.
The original story below is English; I made the Romanian translation 🙂

Astazi o voi lasa pe prietena mea Rosie sa va inspire cu una dintre povestirile ei – ea este primul guest writer al acestui blog. Incurajez de asemenea si pe altii sa devina creativi si sa-mi trimita articole. As fi incantat sa le public pe blog, pentru ca nu este doar spatiul meu ci si al prietenilor mei. Deocamdata accept texte in engleza, romana si franceza.
Povestea originala de mai jos e in engleza; eu am facut traducerea in romana 🙂


I went into my little greenhouse this morning, just as l do every morning. I check on my plants and look to see if there are any that need water. Another duty I perform is to see if there are any slimers (snails) on my plants or on the walls headed for those same plants. If there are, I pull them off and reintroduce them to the outside. Today there were only two. Maybe they are getting my message about their unwelcomeness. Who knows? Something caught my vision. Something out of the corner of my eye. A movement. I turned toward the Earth Box I have tomato plants in. There was nothing on the plants. However, on the dirt, just laying there was a butterfly. It was a medium sized brown butterfly.

Now butterflies and moths as well as bugs, spiders, frogs and the occasional bird are not unusual in my greenhouse. Everyone is welcome as long as they are mindful of whose house it is. Lately I’ve had 4 of these brown butterflies along with a beautifully colored indigo blue and black swallow tail butterfly. None of them had seemed to be in a hurry to get out. They would be caught and taken outside and by evening be right back where they were upon being caught.

This little butterfly, however, spoke to me right away. As I watched it laying there I saw that it was twitching. First one wing, then the other. Its antennae was moving only a little. Then it seemed to look at me and I was filled with the understanding that it was dying. I have helped many animals die, although they were mostly dogs and cats. I have also been blessed with the opportunity to assist several people through their death process. It is such a humbling experience. But I certainly have never been called upon to help a butterfly! As I watched this little butterfly struggling to move, I spoke to the butterfly and told it would do my best.

With that I picked it up and held it in my hands. It seemed to perk up a bit as it was tasting the skin on my hand. I talked to it as it was tasting me. I told it I was very honored it had chosen me. I told it I understood many of them had only a very short lifespan and how that was sad but it gave them more reason to be so beautiful and to spread the pollen of flowers. I told it that in my humble opinion, their lives may be short, but they are more full because of it. The butterfly stopped tasting me and let its wings fall flat open. I thought it was gone but I think it was tired from tasting me. It just layed there and so I ever so gently stroked its soft wings.

Again it seemed to get a little energy; enough to move its wings once or twice. In my thoughts I heard it say – a flower. A flower! Of course! It needed to be on a flower one last time. In the greenhouse I have some miniature zinnias I have been growing. Some have bloomed. So I gathered this sweet little creature up and took it to one of these. I sat it on the plant. I sort of held it there for a couple of seconds. Then I knew – it was gone.

My precious little friend who I had known for only minutes, left this world after fulfilling its earthly duties. I don’t know why it picked me to help it leave but I am proud, grateful and humbled that it did.
By the way, when it was over for the butterfly I left it where it was and decided to go back later and give it a proper send off. However, when I went back, it was gone.

Rosie Umstattd
June 30, 2014


Romanian translation.


Am intrat in mica mea sera in aceasta dimineata, asa cum fac in fiecare zi. Imi cercetez plantele si ma uit sa vad daca vreuna are nevoie de apa. O alta sarcina pe care o duc la indeplinire este sa verific daca e vreun melc pe plantele mele sau pe peretii serei. In cazul in care sunt, ii desprind si ii scot afara. Astazi au fost doar doi. Probabil ca au inteles mesajul meu ca nu sunt bine-veniti. Cine stie?
Ceva mi-a atras privirea. Ceva ce am prins cu coada ochiului. O miscare. M-am intors catre cutia in care am rasaduri de tomate. Nu era nimic pe ele. Si totusi acolo, pe pamant, statea un fluture. Un fluture maro, de marime mijlocie.

Fluturii si moliile, la fel ca si gandacii, paianjenii, broscutele si unele pasari nu sunt chiar neobisnuite in sera mea. Oricine e bine-venit atata timp cat nu uita in casa cui se afla. Recent am avut 4 asemenea fluturi maro impreuna cu un fluture coada-de-randunica frumos colorat in albastru-indigo si negru. Nici unul nu a parut sa se grabeasca sa iasa afara. Au fost capturati si dati afara, dar pe inserat au revenit in acelasi loc in care au fost prinsi.

Cu toate acestea, acest mic fluture mi-a atras atentia imediat. Privind la el cum statea acolo pe pamant, am observat ca tremura. Prima data o aripa, apoi si cealalta. Antenele i se miscau doar putin. Apoi paru ca se uita la mine si ma lovi revelatia faptului ca era pe moarte.
Am ajutat multe animale sa moara, dar majoritatea au fost caini sau pisici. Am fost de asemenea binecuvantata sa asist mai multi oameni in timpul trecerii in nefiinta. Este o experienta ce imbina atat respectul cat si modestia. Dar cu siguranta nu am mai fost niciodata chemata sa ajut un fluture! Privind acest mic fluture chinuindu-se sa se miste, i-am spus ca voi face tot ce imi sta in putinta pentru el.

Asadar, l-am luat si l-am tinut in mainile mele. A parut ca se ridica un pic in timp ce testa pielea de pe mana mea. I-am vorbit in timp ce ma atingea. I-am marturisit ca ma simteam onorata de faptul ca m-a ales pe mine sa-i fiu alaturi in aceste momente. I-am spus ca am inteles ca multi dintre ei au o durata a vietii foarte scurta, si ca sunt foarte trista din cauza asta, dar acest fapt le da mult mai multe motive ca sa fie frumosi si sa imprastie polenul florilor. I-am zis ca, dupa umila mea parere, in ciuda faptului ca vietile lor sunt scurte, ele sunt si mult mai pline din acelasi motiv. Fluturele se opri din testat si isi lasa aripile sa cada larg deschise. M-am gandit ca s-a dus, dar probabil obosise de la atata efort de a-mi explora pielea. Statea pur si simplu acolo, nemiscat, asa ca i-am atins cu delicatete aripile moi.

Din nou paru sa prinda putina putere, suficient cat sa-si miste aripile de vreo cateva ori. In gandurile mele l-am auzit zicand – o floare. O floare! Desigur! Voia sa fie pe o floare pentru ultima data. In sera am niste zinnias miniaturale pe care le cultiv de ceva timp. Unele au inflorit. Asa ca am luat aceasta gingasa fiinta si am dus-o la una dintre flori. L-am pus pe planta. L-am tinut acolo pentru cateva secunde. Dupa care am stiut – plecase.

Dragul meu prieten pe care l-am cunoscut doar pentru cateva minute a plecat din aceasta lume dupa ce si-a dus la indeplinire indatoririle sale lumesti. Nu stiu de ce m-a ales pe mine ca sa-l ajut sa plece, dar sunt mandra, recunoscatoare si onorata de faptul ca a facut-o. Dupa ce fluturele a murit, l-am lasat acolo unde era si m-am hotarat sa revin mai tarziu pentru un ramas-bun asa cum se cuvine. Insa, cand m-am reintors, disparuse.

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