When the Bee Stings

by Rai


“Speaking your mind has consequences,” said the bee, quite upset to have blown into my face during my morning bike ride. His bite was quick. His aim was true.

“Touché,” I said, plucking his legs from my lip, “now we all are stung.”

Karma, I thought. Someone didn’t like my story.

Undeterred, I didn’t stop. I didn’t go home. Not yet at least. Kept riding toward some truth, wherever it was leading me.

Passersby stared. I noted bewilderment upon their faces.

6 miles into my journey the swelling had morphed, felt like it was going down. It was then that I rounded back toward the south trail, road home like my life depended on it.

Must get back, I thought. Might lose photo op.

Ne’er a thought of safety.

I thought only of words, obstacles and ragged determination. I thought of the fine line between knowing when to filter myself and knowing when to be unabashedly me. I recited silent apologies for all I’ve done and all I’ve yet to do. I forgave myself, everything. I forgave the bee.. which was actually probably a wasp. Truth be told, I was never even mad at it. Seemed so natural to be stung.

Upon arriving home, shock was looking in a mirror. My worries had been unfounded. The swelling had not gone down, but increased. I was/am horribly disfigured.

Let’s not make this for naught.

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Now, I wonder if I should take a Benadryl…