Ladybirds are generally slow moving creatures. They hang out on leaves and surprise humans occasionally by sitting quietly on a curtain in your house. But Lizzy was different – I guess you could call her hyper-active, she liked to move! Lizzy moved quickly, regularly and erratically. She hated to stay in the same place for more than thirty minutes. Even when she sat on a leaf, she was never absolutely still. Her six tiny feet would tap and twist and dance and her feelers were always turning and sensing what was going on around her. Some ladybirds called her Skinny Lizzy, others called her Busy Lizzy – she was skinny because she was so busy.
Lizzy lived in a small hole in the trunk of an oak tree. There she stayed with her mother and father and her five ladybug sisters. Her family were all pretty regular ladybirds – slow moving and happy to sit still. During the day Lizzy could get out of the tree and keep herself busy, but at night-time her whole family gathered in the three to sit together and watch the night sky. Lizzy hated the night; she found it impossible to sit still like her sisters. But since it was dark she was not allowed to leave the safety of the tree.
So because she couldn’t sit still Lizzy found herself going back and forth between the kitchen and the lounge – a lot! She would sit for thirty minutes and then get up and go to the pantry and find some food to nibble. She would go to the ladybird bathroom and then sit for another thirty minutes before doing the same thing all over again. Lizzy and her family sat watching the stars for about five hours each evening – so that meant that Lizzy ate at least TEN times a night!!!
It wasn’t long before all the eating caught up with her and she stopped being called Skinny Lizzy. As she gradually gained more and more weight and started to slow down. Her six miniature feet strained under her new bulk, she was no longer able to zip about the place. But Lizzy was still a Busy – despite being unable to move, she remained hyper-active. Since her body could not be hyper Lizzy found that her mind increasingly began to wander and she found it hard to focus for more than thirty minutes. More and more, Lizzy’s concentration suffered. She found it hard to follow her teachers in school and was constantly in trouble for day dreaming and forgetting to do her homework. Busy Lizzy was renamed Lazy Lizzy.
The transformation from Skinny Busy Lizzy to Lazy Lizzy had been slow and incremental so that no one had really noticed or remembered that Lizzy used to not be lazy. Even Lizzy began to forget her active self and the only way to help her was lost and forgotten about. Lizzy needed to be allowed to keep her body busy so that her mind did not have to do all the moving for her – but no one knew or ever remembered…