The Start of the Whole Dragonfly Thing for Me

Dear Blog,

Today’s NaBloPoMo prompt is “What was your most precious possession when you were a kid?”

That reminded me of something that – while not exactly qualifying as a precious possession to me then (although it is one now) – certainly captivated me as a kid and started a little obsession that is still going strong today: dragonflies.

Last week I had a little person (and parents) visit me at my place. Dad pointed out the dragonfly symbol to be found all over the house, and encourage the young man to seek them out in all the rooms. Then came the inevitable question: “Why do you like dragonflies so much?”

Well, here is how it all began:

Oma's dragonfly tea spoon
Oma’s dragonfly tea spoon

When I was 2 years old, my mother took me to the Netherlands to show me (off) to all the relatives, being the first grandchild in the family and all. To keep me amused, my grandmother (Oma) let me play with her teaspoons and apparently I became especially enamoured of the one with the dragonfly on the handle. So much so, that it was given to me. And I still have it to this day.

I don’t know for sure the origin of this spoon. I do know that there was (and still is) a women’s magazine in the Netherlands called Libelle. Which is the Dutch word for dragonfly.

Stamping on back of spoon
Stamping on back of spoon

I think this may have been a promotional item for the magazine but have no way of knowing for sure as both Oma and Mom are gone now.

Since that time I’ve had a fascination with dragonflies. Across the street from my childhood farmhouse home was a pond and some abandoned fields. As kids, my sisters and I spent hours playing there – exploring the ruined foundations of old buildings and chasing tadpoles, frogs and bugs, including dragonflies and damselflies.

When I got older, dragonflies came to represent various things to me – creativity, adaptability and transformation/rebirth. Dragonfly nymphs start out living under water and only leave the water to become the flying adult form. Quite the change of venue and form! I’ve had to start my life over a couple of times already so transformation resonates with me.

In some native cultures, dragonflies represent the souls of the departed.

People that care for me love to gift me with items that include a dragonfly motif. I happily accept these and as a result, I have many, many dragonflies everywhere in my home and my life.

I’m not sure if this means the dragonfly is my spirit animal…but hey, a girl could do worse.

Rock on,

The WB


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  • I remember that spoon… She had several I suppose… Or maybe my other grandmother had the same. Anywho, I can remember the spoon one way or the other.
    Your guess about the magazine and the spoon might be very right. Still you can order cutlery and other kinds of silverware from Libelle, but nowadays it will not be labeled Libelle, but just the manufacturers name. (brand I suppose).
    Or maybe it was a gift when you subscribed it was a gift… Something like that.

    Love dragonlies myself, the beautiful colors surprise me every time..


  • Thanks Cuz, for the additional information. When I googled the spoon, a curiosity dealer’s site in Rotterdam came up with a picture of the exact spoon but it had sold already. Not for much money, I think. They were selling other kinds of spoons also and each was listed at around 3-5 euros. But I couldn’t find out any other information about it.
    Love, Deb

  • Dragonflies! I love dragonflies too! I have several pieces of dragonfly artwork in my house, some originals. Even when I was a child, I found them fascinating. One more thing we have in common. Oh, and I have a spoon story on my blog too. I’ll email it to you.

    • Thanks Reticula. Lots to love about dragonflies. My poison pen correspondent chastised me for my love of dragonflies, saying they were predatory and therefore not a good symbol. So clearly someone that knows me or knows of me. Dragonflies keep the mosquito population down – what’s wrong with that, I ask? Perhaps her symbol is the mosquito – a blood sucker that spreads disease. Sounds about right to me. 😉

      • Did you publish the contents of the note anywhere? I didn’t see that. Did this person correspond with you over time? What a great story and mystery!

        • No I haven’t published the contents yet and not sure I will. I was hoping that I would hear more from my poison pen writer but so far this note has been the only communication. I keep going back and forth as to whether or not to involve my husband’s sister. She may know who this is since the writer seems to be a long-time friend of their family. But that would be for my selfish curiousity only, and probably just end up hurting her so I hesitate to do this.

          • It’s probably not worth hurting her, but I’d sure be curious. Not to seek revenge or anything though. Huh uh. Not I.

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