Strangers often want to warn Lacey Shillinglaw that there’s a bee in her hair, but we promise there’s no need for alarm.
This 13-year-old from the U.K. is no stranger to caring for animals, so it was totally in character for her to take notice of a tiny injured bee. What was surprising, however, was the unique bond that formed between them.
Lacey and her family members were on their way back home from walking their dog when the teen spotted a helpless insect on the road. Upon further inspection, she discovered the poor bumblebee had one crumpled wing.
Wanting to put her in a safer place than the street, Lacey found a nice flower to set her on. When the bee refused to get off Lacey, she tried another flower… and another… and another. Before she knew it, an hour had passed. The sweet little bee just couldn’t bear to part ways with her rescuer.
At that point, Lacey and her family decided to just let the bee, now named Betty, come home with them. It’s been several weeks since then, and the two are still as close as ever.
At any given moment, Betty can be found crawling on her new best friend. Many people would find this terrifying, but Lacey couldn’t love it more.
“It really is such an amazing thing to see,” her mom, Laura Pashley, said. “Lacey has no fear at all of any animals — apart from spiders!”
As much as Lacey loves their friendship, she hasn’t been trying to make Betty stay. In fact, she’s given the bee plenty of opportunities to go her own way, including taking her outside and trying to leave her there. But every single time, Betty simply follows her bestie back inside their home.
They’re so close at this point that Betty has gone out with Lacey on visits to the store. She’s even gone bowling with 14 of Lacey’s human friends!
Still, you would think these two would part ways when it’s time to sleep, but even then, Betty can’t stand to be apart from her. So Lacey created a makeshift bed using a small lid, which she always keeps by her bed. Betty stays there all night and won’t leave the room until Lacey does.
“Betty climbs in Lacey’s long hair like it’s some kind of jungle. She’s on her 90 percent of the time during the day, including her face, her glasses, and even in between her toes,” Laura said. “It’s so beautiful — just gorgeous.”
Of all the people this could have happened to, it makes sense that it was Lacey. She’s incredibly passionate about animals and plans to become a veterinarian when she grows up.
“Her cat Larry regularly brings in mice and half of the time they are unharmed, and Lacey will not think twice about just scooping them up in her hands to check them over and set them free,” Laura added.
There’s no telling if Betty will ever find herself ready to become more independent, but no matter when or if that happens, she’s made a profound difference in Lacey’s life.
“I’m so happy and I just love spending my time with her. She’s so fluffy and I love our friendship,” Lacey said. “Betty is totally amazing — I’ll remember this forever.”
Share this story to celebrate Lacey and Betty’s unexpected friendship.
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