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Updated on September 6, 2008

Understanding that very bad things are happening to our world

The horror and panic began when I really got it that they were missing . . . disappeared . . . gone. Nobody knowing why most of the world’s honey bees suddenly left their safe and orderly hives and wandered, lost and silent –forgetting even how to dance the ancient dance they needed to survive. It seems that each small creature died alone and so scattered that no identifiable “hive” could be found at identified at all by those who searched the orchards and the fields. Just dead and dying bees.

As the implications of this sudden and undeniable disruption sunk in, I began to experience a strangely sickening physical sensation - a sort of nausea . . . that I’ve only felt in the immediate aftermath of a largish California earthquake. So strange that this shocking revelation that these little bees were inexplicably absent would trigger the exact same “body memories” I had felt on those rare, terrifying and indelibly imprinted moments after the major earthquakes. In those moments I was literally yanked into a stark awareness that our terra firma was illusionary and that even though the violent shaking had subsided. I and my entire world still swayed and rocked gently, as would a large and sturdy ship in ocean swells. The panic inspiring reality of our situation is that we are very small and very weak creatures adrift upon gigantic plates floating on fiery molten rock oceans. Things are not as they seem.

It's not even that I'm really fond of bees - in fact I've always avoided getting too close to them lest I be stung - or, more truthfully (and apologetically) because all insects and crawly, fling buzzing things in general have creeped me out since I was a toddler. No excuse . . . just fact; and yes, I know bees are “good bugs” and all that, but still . . .

I had been successfully “not noticing” the absence of these most innocent and industrious of creatures, even as occasional news commentaries, some online post and my green thumbed life partner voiced escalating levels of alarm. No one seemed to have any answers; only nervous speculations about what causes or conditions might be involved in the sudden and mysterious decimation of the worldwide honeybee population. You see I am very, very good at not noticing certain kinds of things very bad things.

My “not noticing” ability is a trait that comes quite naturally to me – largely because of a neurobiological “quirk” called ADHD. I can and do tune out. However I have also tuned this “off switch” to block those soul-destroying conundrums over which I have no control – this ability has been among my most effective defensive weapons when I have had no choice but to endure the unendurable – to keep on pushing on when everything seems hopeless. The soft and feeling parts just “go away” to a safer place - leaving only an unemotional, determined and hyper-focused mind to accomplish the impossible when the impossible was the only alternative I could see for survival.

This “not noticing” capability has permitted me to function very well in situations and circumstances that have destroyed many others. It has blunted and masked the wounds to a body and mind that was ripped and violated and all that should have remained was my bottomless well of grief. It mercifully shielded my hidden fragility from the assaults that threatened to tear me past hope of repair. Yes, not noticing was the blessed dullness protecting my naked, pale and tender parts with the dense and opaque armor which some, thinking that they knew me well, mistook for bravery. Now it seems my armor vanished along with the hives; and am left here naked and wondering if it, or the bees, will ever return.


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    • Louie Jerome profile image

      Louie Jerome 9 years ago from UK

      Interesting hub! here in UK, I think there are more bees this year than usual. The trouble is that there were bees around in February because it was very mild and they seem to be getting mixed up by the changes in the seasons.

    • Shadesbreath profile image

      Shadesbreath 9 years ago from California

      Not noticing does have its upsides, that's for sure; I go for the ignorance is bliss approach when it comes to a few things. However, I will admit I'm not a big fan of surprises, so I do kind of nit pick what I am willing to intentionally over look. LOL.

      And yeah, the bee thing is an uncomfortable omen, perhaps about our technology. I hope it's just a hiccup in the balance of things and not a portent of something more ominous. Glad you brought it up.