Walking down my driveway the other afternoon, I noticed a honey bee struggling weakly on the pavement.
This is nothing new, and my first thought was, as soon as my son comes home, he’ll figure out a way to get that bugger’s little ass dagger stuck in his bare foot.
I was right about to lift my foot and squash him into the great bee-yond, when I remembered something I’d seen online were a guy saved a tired bee with some honey.
I stared at him dragging himself feebly in no particular direction. I nodded my head in empathy. Maybe he’d had a really rough day, or week, or life, and was just felt too petered out to go on.
“What the hell, why not?”
I went inside and grabbed a jar of honey and served a globule up close to him. He dragged himself the half inch over to the dollop of honey, and, to my surprise, he actually started chowin’ down.
A minute later he was done. He didn’t take off, but he started doing the bee equivalent of peppy jog, even if still a bit aimlessly.
“Maybe it worked?”
I squatted and watched, hoping to observe him take to the air again, my video camera rolling just in case. After a few minutes, the silliness of the situation and the ache in my legs became a deal breaker. So, I left him to his own destiny.
“Good bye and good luck, little bee buddy.”
It made me feel good. Whether the little guy was at the end of his gas tank, or the end of his days, I felt like I’d given him a chance, or at least given him a sweet last meal before his curtain fell.
Thinking on it, I realized that there are a lot of chances to help others that we just don’t act on because we feel like they just won’t make a difference, or aren’t worth the trouble for the little good we feel they might do.
People say that there are no selfless acts. Their argument being that the warm and fuzzy satisfaction of helping is a kind of selfishness. I don’t think that’s the right use of that word, though. It doesn’t seem quite right to refer to eating as a selfish act, does it? It’s personal, yes. But selfish? Not quite.
Say what you will. It brightened my day to try to help save a single bee. I think helping is nourishing to one’s soul, as much as food is nourishing to the body. And in these dark times we live in, helping others might be just about one of the best ways for us to take care of our own hearts.