Close your eyes and think about the last time you felt alive. The kind of alive where every cell in your body is vibrating at a frequency perfectly in tune with all that is surrounding you and you are not in conflict with anything. A time when you felt like a pure human being; part animal, part spirit, and wholly alive and comfortable in your space. Sometimes these moments can be hard to pinpoint in our busy daily life, sometimes we don’t even notice how in tune we are with the rhythm of life around us until the moment has passed. But they are there. They often show up when we need them most. The last time I felt this alive was last year when I was surrounded by thousands of honey bees.
It was a warm April day and I had spent most of the winter frantically searching for work and being depressed about my lot in life. I was an abject failure to myself. I was not a living person but a shell of a lady who couldn’t catch a break. All my energy went to saving face around my friends and family and sending out what felt like thousands of resumes a week into the void. Rejected was my default state of being, I couldn’t find work let alone meaningful work, and the bills just kept changing colors. Then I received a special invitation.
“We are getting a new hive this week! You should come up and check it out!”
With a gas tank filled with borrowed money and nothing on my calendar to keep me away, I drove to my friend’s home in Thomaston. Zel and Dan are dear friends of mine who have begun their journey into sustainability. They grow food, tap trees, have chickens, and they keep bees. I cherish their friendship and admire their lifestyle. If I had had health insurance at the time, this invite would have been just what the doctor ordered.
I didn’t know how honey bees “arrived” but come to find out, these little buggers were buzzing in a small screened up box that Zel and Dan had picked up down the road in Whitefield, at your one stop bee shop, Spicer Bees.
While I watched them squirm about in their temporary enclosed state, unable to take flight just yet, I identified with them. “Just let me out to do what I was meant to do! I am meant to work!” I felt them saying. And I was like “Same.”
We suited up and brought them to the hives Zel and Dan keep up next to their garden. The hive they had wintered was waking up in the spring sunshine and its proud members flitted about the few blooms that were just opening up. The newbie bees were to be joining the established bee hive next door in a hive of their very own. As Dan released them from their screen box they flew out in a flurry of golden yellow excitement. Surrounding us and scoping out their new home. As they weaved about us sometimes bouncing off our white beekeeper suites, I was told by Dan that they were establishing us as friends and also pooping everywhere since they had been holding it in the entire time they were in their box. Bees are polite like that.
It was then I realized I was smiling. A real smile, not the one you give the checkout lady at Hannaford, not the smile you give your friends to ensure they don’t worry about you, not the smile you use to answer the phone in case it’s a potential employer, but a genuine human expression of joy. In that moment I wasn’t a failure, I wasn’t rattled with doubt or insecurity, I was just one of many living beings on a little rock that was lucky enough to have a sun, that’s enough sometimes. I’ve read that the frequency of a cat’s purr can actually have therapeutic effects, well times it by a couple hundred and you’ll find out that being in a cloud of bees can mend (almost) any broken heart. Each friendly buzz vibrated my cells to an awakened state after being asleep for so long. The bees seemed to be saying to no one in particular “Hey, wake up! It’s a great day to be alive to do what you were put here to do!” And I did.
Volume up on this video to get the full BUZZZZZZZZZZ experience!