Antsy


We all know that feeling of being antsy.

I have often felt antsy to leave class and get home or been antsy to go out and do something fun.  You sit on the edge of your chair and fidget while waiting for the clock to turn.

Recently, I have felt very antsy every time I have started to feel better.  Each time of feeling better, I have not been that much better off health-wise but more so symptom-wise, like (1) the drastic change of not being hooked up to anything in the hospital or (2) losing all my water weight or (3) being able to eat and slowly put on weight.  These three changes have made me feel antsy to get back to living my old life.

When you’re one step closer to something you want or your goal, how do you act?

I can pinpoint my ability to feel antsy to quite a few people.

First, I want to tell you a story of my bugs.
I had to grow larva, and I had a heck of a time doing so.
I enrolled in an intro to entomology course this past spring (2012) to fulfill my last science credit requirements (hallelujah!!!) and a big part of the course grade was to successfully grow a bug from egg to adulthood.
My professor chose  the Tobacco Hornworm or Manduca Sexta.
Here is what their life cycle looks like from egg to adulthood:
(Google Images and Wikipedia)

Eggs
(they are so tiny, like to roll around, and try to get lost)
manduca sexta eggsHatched
(they are pale and the size of the tip of your finger nail)
manduca sexta baby

M. Sexta has five larval instars which are separated by ecdysis (molting)”
With each instar it grows in size after molting.
I had a hard time finding a picture of a Manduca Sexta molting, so I will describe it the best I can– because the molting part of this story is how it connects to people surviving.
How it molts is by detaching all its muscles and shedding its outer skin/ exoskeleton.  You will see below that it has white dots.  That is where its lungs are.  These lungs are pulled out with each molting.
With my larva, one lung kept staying attached.  My larva would try to desperately bite it off, so it could continue to molt.  Unfortunately, my larva could not bite it off.  They struggled a lot and did not make it…

Growing
(after 5th instar, it starts to wander)

manduca sexta larvae

It burrows underground to pupate.

Pupation and Moth
(it  climbs onto a stick to spread out and dry its wings)

manduca larvae pupa and moth

My larva tried to recover.
They just did not have the right conditions given to them.
I think it was because my room was too cold.  I would feed them fresh wheat-germ cubes, give them 13 or more hours of light a day, clean out their poop droplets, and wipe out the threatening condensation.  What else could a caring, human mother do for her little bugs.  My professor did tell me to take a sharp tool to sever the lung away from their bodies, but I did not have a sharp tool to attempt this.

I luckily have been given the right conditions to heal.  I had doctors realize I needed surgery.  I had a surgeon calculate a plan for me.  I had a home health nurse and dietitian guide me on how to eat while my body was getting used to its new form.  I had the much-needed help of my Grandma preparing all my meals and assisting me with other basic survival things and so forth.

“Thank you” for giving me the ability to feel antsy even though it is a feeling that brings annoyance.  You just want whatever you’re waiting for to happen already.

Something else that comes with this antsy feeling are expectations.  You expect what you’re waiting for to happen.  Sometimes it’s best to be happy with where you are, not expect something to happen, and just let life happen.  That’s how a lot of people fall in love– someone suddenly drops into their life and an unexpected relationship grows with ease.

How I thought to write about larva in this post:

I thought about my bugs and this course, because we had to write papers on different essay prompts my professor would come up with practically each week.  The first week I wrote about my history with ants.  Since this post is titled “Antsy” how could I not think about my paper on my history with ants and then not think of my bugs.  

And in case you were wondering…
My history with ants goes something like this:

I remember one day of my childhood I was sitting  out in my backyard on the ground near ants.  I was having fun crushing them and my Dad told me to stop.  I think he said something like, “What are they doing to you? Let them be.”  That lesson stuck.
If something is not bothering or harming you, why bother or harm it.

manduca goodbye

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