I have had a nerve wracking week.
Last Saturday, I took my friend, Merriweather, who was visiting from Maine to go and check on my bees and see how they were settling into their new hive. Well. They were downright ornery (meaning, they kept flying at me and buzzing and generally acting like bouncers). And I couldn't find my queen. I was so flustered by my own inexperience that I just hurriedly put the hive back together and ran away.
All week, I've been thinking about my queen.
A hive must, absolutely must, have a queen. They can't survive without her. They depend on her to give the colony cohesiveness and direction. They count on her for more baby bees, to keep the hive strong and healthy. Just by her mere presence, she sets the tone for every bee in my hive. All 10,000 of them, and counting.
But without my queen? Well. Without a queen, the workers start just wandering around like teenagers at the mall, being promiscuous without any clue of the consequences. It doesn't take long at all for the colony to shrivel and fail without their queen.
So I've been anxious about her. Without her, I fail.
Today, my mentor (bless him) met up with me and we gave my colony a thorough going-over. I have been humbled, which is a good thing--I am more careful. I ask lots more questions. I ask for more help. And on the second to last frame--there she was. But even if I hadn't seen her, I knew she was there. The colony was in perfect order. You could easily tell, they have a queen.
Which has gotten me thinking about my own little home, and my own children. How often I set the tone. How little I realize it. How I can send out the "All is Well!" signal, or the "Every man for himself!" signal at any given moment. That's my job. To set the tone. To give my own little baby bees cohesiveness and direction.
I need to be a better queen.