There was an extended period of nothingness during which I was so insentient, the only reason I knew I lived at all was that sometimes, roused by a gentle swaying, I swam up to just below the surface of awareness. The rocking brought me dreamily up through the dark, after which I drifted, insensate again, back into oblivion.
One day, still in darkness, I was all at once awake and cognizant. Something pressed against me from all sides, holding me immobile. I closed my eyes and waited.
When I opened them again, faint, grey threads of light were filtering through whatever it was that enveloped me. I compulsively jerked, knowing in some instinctual part of myself that I had to get out of this shroud-like confinement, and I had to do it soon. I forced myself into motion.
My efforts exhausted me, and I was about to sag back into immobility, when I spotted a nearly imperceptible seam in the tightness of the fabric; I could see it giving way with my feeble struggles. I could use this line of frailty as my way out.
My limbs were pinned, so I had no way of kicking or tearing through it. In a flash of insight, I inhaled as much air as my body could hold, which filtered in from tiny holes in the sheath around me. This expanded my body just enough to make a widening split in the fabric. Clean, white light knifed through the opening.
There was now enough space to slip a limb through and expand the rip. I made a rent in it wide enough for me to start fighting my way out.
With the renewed strength only the hope of freedom can bring, I maneuvered my body, tearing and struggling against my prison until I was free.
I thought my ordeal was over, but there was a long drop to the ground below. If I released what hold I still had on the material that had previously encased me, I would plummet like a stone.
Feeling myself swallowed up by weariness, I clutched onto the fabric and held it like a vise. I needed time to muster my strength again. I positioned myself in such a way that I wouldn’t fall.
I don’t know how long I clung there like that, but this period of rest, along with the increasing warmth of the sunlight, renewed my strength and my resolve. I needed to get my blood flowing. It was time to make my move, and I did.
Life is so full of miracles, beauty, and joy! Mine stretches out before me now as though an eternity. I have a whole, entire month to live in the wide, shiny world. Thirty sunrises. Thirty sunsets. I know this in some instinctual part of myself. I knew it the moment I wafted my silken wings, let go of the chrysalis, and drifted off with the wind over the flower-laden field.