The Itsy Bitsy Spider. Just the first line elicits the finger twist climb from moms everywhere.
Some, after hearing the first line, go on to hum it most of the day, even when they are NOT with their children. I am one of those.
Some time between recitation 200 and 205, I started thinking about the lyrics. That spider, it seems at first, is getting a pretty raw deal. climbing all the way up that spout, leg over leg over leg until all eight are exhausted. Then, just when she approaches the
top, you know it....sing along with me...Down came the rain and washed the spider out. I don't know about you, but I start to feel bad for the spider. Until, ahhh, at last, the second part. Out came the sun, I dare you not to actually act out the song by raising your arms right now. So, out came the sun,
and dried up all the rain. Got to love the sun. And, the itsy bitsy spider climbed up the spout again.
I love a happy ending. But, since I am headed to sing along #206, I dig a little deeper in my interpretation of this seemingly simple little song. The beginning, fairly cut and dry, a spider, on her way, following the path before her. Getting up, doing her thing. I imagine she had a web to clean, perhaps a morning cup of fly. Which leads me to ponder...do flies contain caffeine? I sure hope so for my new found sista', the arachnid.
From here, she sort of gazes at her day ahead. This, I imagine involves, surveying the web. She looks around and no doubt wonders, " I am so sick of cleaning up this web. I clean up, it gets messed up again. All day long, clean, spin, clean, spin." I have to chuckle as I relate to this. It seems my life is
on the spin cycle most days too. She glimpses a plump little something that her web has caught. But, being an organized little spider, she prepares the little tidbit by wrapping it and setting it aside to
stew until dinner.
My crock pot and I concur, this is the sanest method.
She has a moment to pause after her mornings work. She checks her eggs, still quiet, still calm. I bet all eight hands would raise up in a "Praise God" moment for that. Nothing quite like a quiet little brood when you have lots to do.
She places a call into her spider sitting co op and arranges a sitter to stand by the eggs while she heads up to catch some rays. She transfers her already cold cup of fly into a to go mug, sets the tidbit timer, pats her little eggs, and exits the web ready for her journey on up.
There it is, the local spout. The obvious and quick route to some rest and relaxation in the sun. And so, with one last gulp of her venti non fat fly, she takes her first steps. She encounters a few other spiders along the way. They all have that "the eggs are at home glow" about them. She smiles as she
passes a few, nods some quick hellos and continues on her way. She wants to bask in the fully earned feeling of sun time and so runs her last few days over in her head.
There were some tough ones. First, the web came loose from its anchor. That was a doozy. She had to work double time
that night to repair. She had to make the ends meet. She was missing some parts and had to search on Webslist for a good deal on silk repair gel. Oh, and then , the next day, the wind, a webs worst nightmare. But, her reinforced web held up, the only loss being a few fruit flies, no big deal.
Then, last night, her sixth, seventh, and eighth leg almost tremble at the memory, unexpected guests. The spiders from next door had an unfortunate turn of events in the silk market. They were not able
to pay all their webtilities and were being forced to forespin on their web. Being the gracious arachnid that she was, she of course invited them all in for dinner.
But, it was nothing short of a miracle that
she was able to make her weekly catchings enough for a full stir fly dinner. Her guests were appreciative, and she felt good that it seemed to lift their cephalothoraxes a bit.
But, now, now, it was her time to sit back and regroup. Only another couple feet and she would be at the top. She smiled and didn't even notice the breeze and first drops. In the last few inches she began to look up, already able to see her favorite warm spot. It was then that a drop hit her square in the abdomen startling her to her senses. "Oh no !" she thought. She had worked all week for that looming moment of R & R. As that thought escaped her drops came, two, three, four.
She didn't even have time to claim a dry spot. She, and all the well deserving spiders along the way were gushed to and fro and washed right out of the spout. To make matters worse, she continued out the spout,
past the guard, and right into a small puddle. "Great, just great! " She floated a bit and climbed up on a piece of old pine mulch, holding on for a bit. This toppled a few times and she regrouped and held onto a firm leaf. It brought some rest. She floated to the edge of the puddle right up against the spout
guard. She waited out the relentless drops.
She begins to wonder where she went wrong. She had it all lined up. The egg sitter, the web all tidy in a row after row after row. Why would the weather change now? She was beginning to wallow in self spinny, when it hit her! She had not even consulted the webmaster before making these plans! Oh NO! Here she was making all these plans, forgetting to ask for guidance from the great www.
She stopped right there and offered her thoughts up to him. " Master, I am sorry I did not consult you. Iknow better than to make my own plans and expect you to bless them. I know your timing is right. I know to consult you first and follow your blessed plans. I don't know what came over me." As she
wallowed in her confession, she noticed, her puddle was shrinking.
She looks up, just in time to see the sun burst from behind the large clouds. "Oh ebmaster! You heard me! Is it time now?" Out came the sun, and dried up all the rain.
Well, we know the rest, and the itsy bitsy spider climbed up the spout again. Got to love the webmasters grace. Got to love her teachable little spirit. Isn't this just the way? God using a simple little ditty to help us see his grace and perfect timing. I know that little spider made her way all the
way to the top next. It was the right time, the right circumstances, and the right path. After all, when the son comes out, you follow right?
I imagine she steadily, confidently climbed her way up, having peace of spinner, knowing that the silk creator had set this forth as her time. Not an hour ago, not tomorrow, right now. Her reward was waiting higher up.
I can see her now, reaching the top. All eight legs straining to reach the destination laid out
for her. Arching, arms raising, settling in to just the right spot to bask. The spout, now warmed up just right. Sunlit perfectly, containing the most lovely resting spots. This is so much better than she could have
imagined. She picks her perch, and sinks in. She is still. As she drifts into a sunny slumber, she contemplates this spot picked just for her and softly hums,
"Amazing grace. How sweet the spout. That saved an arachnid like me. I once was lost, and on the ground, on pine, but now I see."
I am currently living in Milford, NH with my husband John, and our three children, Caroline, Maggie and Jacob. I am currently a fourth grade teacher. We have recently moved back to New England, and I thank God every day for the blessing of being close to my family.
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