They aren’t all lizards.

I still feel new to Florida. Even though I have been here about four years I am still getting used to the super hot climate, harsh grass and beyond ugly yard creatures. I will admit, I struggle being here sometimes. There are a lot of things I miss about the north, but nothing compares to the way my hair misses a drier climate.

Now, I am not a reptile fan. I think they are gross, no offense. I am still getting acclimated to these little creatures that seem to be everywhere I look: cockroaches, lizards, snakes, bufo toads (you’re gonna wanna look that one up!) and noseeums (you can’t see them – no joke – but they bite like a mosquito). We recently had a new and unwelcome yard guest: an armadillo.

I was throwing myself a pity party the other day, with Daniel (though I know he wished he wasn’t invited), about all of the gross animals that live here. I was wondering why they couldn’t be like the animals in Indiana: soft, cute, friendly and approachable. I am used to soft grass, nice squirrels, worms and ladybugs.

A few days later I had thirty minutes of free time so I went to the beach and just sat there. I felt something crawling up my leg, and I’ll be honest, these days that freaks me out. Though much to my surprise it was a little ladybug. I don’t know the last time I saw a ladybug and on the fringes of my earlier conversation, I found myself encouraged.

Sometimes in life we can find ourselves overwhelmed with change, the lack of change, external or even internal circumstances. I think that if we allow ourselves to stay there we can be defeated. Yes, the majority of animals here make me skittish. Yes, I look both directions before I step out of my house. But amidst all of the change, adjustments and growing pains there is always joy if I choose to see it. After all, the grass isn’t always greener – or softer – on the other side… but that doesn’t make it bad – it just makes it different.

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