– Ladybug, Ladybud… Essay, Research Paper


In W.O. Mitchell’s

Ladybug, Ladybug

Sometimes in life, if you do not tell the truth or if you withhold information it causes a lot more grief than if you had just been honest. These secrets are destroying relationships everywhere. In Ladybug, Ladybug the secrets kept between characters causes them to come close to losing one another. Without allowing people to become close or neglecting to tell them of important information about yourself you will lead yourself to destruction. In W.O. Mitchell’s Ladybug, Ladybug secrets are destructive as demonstrated through Nadya and Lyon’s secrets and also through life assessing images.

The worst kind of secret is one in which you withhold information that could potentially save a person’s life. Nadya’s secret is one of this nature. She neglects to tell her employer, and newfound friend, about her ex-lover who had been stalking her. She also keeps this from her young daughter who should be more cautious with strangers. The problem grows when Nadya becomes worried about her ex-lover and keeping him a secret to the point of ignoring and not paying attention to her child. This causes the child to be distraught and unaware of things around her. As Lyon, her new friend, notices the tension and questions Nadya about what had happened, why she was upset, she replies, “I ran across someone out there, a guy. Somebody I’d just as soon I hadn’t run across. That’s all. No big deal” (p. 80). Being unaware of the dangers, Lyon does not pay close enough attention to the child either, considering the extra attention needed now to keep away from harm. In fact, while at the park with the child he falls asleep on the park bench. “Maybe he ought to join her now. No. This time the round-about had really taken it out of him, and it was lovely here with that spring sun so kind on his eyelids” (p. 208). Through this unconcern for the child, she falls into the hands of her kidnapper. If Nadya had told of her past and the problems that arose from it, she would have been less nervous about it and together everyone could have taken proper precautions.

Too much precaution in life can also lead to destruction. Lyon was so afraid of losing people he cared about that he never let anyone get too close. When Nadya and her daughter came into his life he refused to tell them anything about himself or his past. When they asked a question of him, he replies, “Not right now, dear. Some time – I’ll – I’ll – might – be able to tell you why” (p. 49). This hurt Nadya but especially the child. She could not relate to this neglect and once said to Lyon, “‘You know something, Professor? Half the time I can’t tell whether you’re talking to me. Or yourself.’ She started up the slide ladder. ‘You don’t have to catch me’” (p. 201). Telling him that he did not have to catch her directly refers to her being on the slide. She also is saying though, that she does not have to be let into his life – if he really does not want her to be. Although she is strong in saying this to Lyon, she then is upset and vulnerable. This continued denial of his love caused him to succeed in keeping people out of his life; but to fail in keeping those loved ones strong in spirit and therefore safe.

Life assessing images regarding secrets send out significant messages about the dangers there of. This is introduced very soon when it is said, “He’d come around full circle: lonely child ends up lonely old man” (p. 15). He had just finished talking aloud to himself and is now thinking of how being secretive has kept him so alone. Without expression of himself he has ended up a lonely old man. It is shown that he is upset about this and that his brother had felt the same way. When Lyon questions his brother’s suicide which was due to their broken brother ties he says, “God, Henry – why did you have to do it?” (p. 270). Lyon knew from the suicide note that it was due to them somehow growing apart. Even though Lyon is the same way, he questions his dead brother’s actions since if he had let him know that he was upset and told someone of all his secrets, he could have gotten help to cope with his problems. The images used express some of the major ideas, themes and problems with the characters. They have built a strong picture of how secrets can cause so much destruction in life.

Secrets are very powerful and destructive. In W.O. Mitchell’s Ladybug, Ladybug this is demonstrated through Nadya and Lyon’s secrets and through life assessing images. When secrets have been held between loved ones, chaos is the result. There can be no controlling it. When it comes to those you care about, you must be certain to let them know what is going on in your life. After the destruction has begun there is no going back. Honesty is simply the best policy.


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