When I was little I was very destructive. I liked to mash stuff together and make potions. I would strip plants of their leaves just because they were in reach. I threw rocks around to watch them burst into tiny fragments. I would never maliciously squash bugs. I left most living things alone. I did however get the strangest satisfaction out of tearing into spider eggs and seed pods. For some reason it was very satisfying to my seven year old brain. The egg sacks fell apart like sticky cotton candy and the way it gripped at itself, today reminds me of the way the fascia grips the muscles. The seed pods pretty much burst everywhere and the tiny seeds would go flying. It was just satisfyingly destructive. The best part was I couldn’t get into trouble for these acts (unlike the time I took a pocket knife to the downstairs couch).
One fine day I was wandering around the back yard and found a seed pod dangling from a vine. I popped it off without thinking and started tearing into it. I used my nail to cut a seam into it. Then I began to pull it apart. But there was something different about this seed pod. It was a little gooey and had pieces of something in it. Not like the burst of flat or round seeds I was used to. It took me a minute to see it, but soon my eyes saw what I had done. I had pulled apart a caterpillar’s cocoon. Horrified I threw it on the ground and ran inside to wash the gooey bug “blood” of my fingers. Used the hottest water I could stand and half the soap bottle. I ran to my room and hid under the covers. I prayed to God to forgive me. I promised I would never ever do it again. I was a mess the rest of the day. I was pretty sure God was going to punish me with bad dreams (my nightmares were horrible as a kid).
I pretty much stopped all seed pod bursting after that day. Occasionally I would pop one after I made ABSOLUTE sure it was a plant and not a bug, but for the most part I was done. I was traumatized and I never wanted that to happen ever again.


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