Life Cycles in Nature.

August 29, 2020

Life Cycles in Nature.

May 29, 2023

My friend Neel recently sent me this collection of visual life cycles that were sparked by a Twitter user who posted the life cycle of a blackberry that went viral. From there, people started sharing additional life cycle images of things like coffee, cotton, blueberries, and leaves.

Based upon the social media comments, it seems that what people find fascinating is not just the beautiful images, but how drastically different (sometimes unrecognizable) various stages of the cycle can be. And, of course, there’s that heroic caterpillar-chrysalis-butterfly journey that is both visually exquisite and metaphorically inspiring.

What’s the life cycle of the modern elder? Here’s the society narrative on our aging.


But, here’s our personal narrative of our happiness throughout our life cycle.


If you were to visually depict your life cycle, what image might define each decade of your life?

Reflecting on this question myself, and with just two months left in my fifties, I’d choose an owl to represent my past decade. Ironically, my junior high school mascot was an owl, but my senior high school mascot was a jackrabbit. I think the latter mascot defined my sprint through the first half of my adulthood. I’m doing my best to make sure the wisdom of the owl defines my second half.

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