Recently, I cleaned out a lot of contacts in my phone. As I sat on my floor in front of my space heater because of the bitter Midwest cold, it had to sprinting down memory lane.
But what it reminded me most of, is of all the change that’s taken place in my life.
Change happens all the time. I’m really wrestling with this phenomenon as of late, because I’m not sure if it’s just part of life, especially the life stage that I’m in currently, or if I’m alone in this and it’s a strange combination of my own circumstances.
I started writing this blog post about change almost a year ago. And it’s funny because I thought once I got my living situation and job figured out, things would even out and I’d have less questions, less unknown about my life. Fast forward to present day and I feel like I’m experiencing deja vu in a cruel and twisted way. The ground is still incredibly unstable around me. Remember when you were a kid and would jump from furniture piece to furniture piece avoiding the floor aka lava, and if you touched the floor, you would be consumed by the fiery hot lava? Yeah, that’s what my life feels like.
Since the beginning of 2019, the rug has been ripped from right underneath me and right when I’m regaining my balance, something else happens.
A few years ago, I took the Strength Finders 2.0 test and it gave me five strengths that manifest themselves in my relationships, work style, and life. One of them being adaptability, which means I can be flexible and adapt easily to change. Hey, that’s a good thing I can brag about on my resume! But I’ll let you in on a little secret: I hate change. I really do. I know it’s something I can do easily, mostly because I had to growing up. We moved a lot and I learned that your life can quickly change in an instant.
As a kid, you aren’t as attached to much, as long as your parents create some normalcy at home. Moving is still scary, but there’s faith, maybe it’s blind, in your parents that everything will be okay. You learn to make new friends, how to adjust to a new environment and before you know it, everything’s fine. But as an adult, it’s different. It takes longer to make friends because of history, it takes longer to adjust to a new environment because of memories and your old routine, it takes longer to make someplace feel like home because it’s up to you to create that.
Things have changed, and continue to change. I can feel it in the air, like walking outside in the bitter cold and the wind just seeps into your bones. It’s a deep burn, I can sense the unrest in my heart and honestly, I’m tired of feeling this way. Two of my closest friends here in Ohio are moving away this summer. My job has significantly changed. I still haven’t yet come to terms with my relationship with church. I met someone and that’s a huge question mark. The majority of my close girlfriends are now married. I can barely keep track of everything that is changing.
I was talking to my mom the other day and she was attempting to console me. Bless her heart because it wasn’t working, but she wasn’t wrong in what she was saying. I was telling her how tired I am of everything changing and just wish things would settle around me for once. She said she knew I didn’t really mean that. Change, usually is good. Is it hard? OF COURSE.
Maybe I’m really just complaining about the simple fact that I’m an adult and this is just how life is, but something feels off to me. It’s unrealistic to expect all of my questions to be answered. It’s unreal to think I’ll just get into this routine and nothing will change. How you react to change can literally show yourself and others, growth. I am strong enough to withstand what feels like constant change in my life. But I also know I contradict myself a lot. It’s just who I am.
All I’m saying, is that though I’m incredibly grateful for these experiences and opportunities to grow, I’m tired. A good friend of mine, text me the other day asking how I was emotionally. All I could say is “I’m tired.” Because I’m so tired, it’s extra, extra work for me to be present. I tweeted this the other day:
This year, I decided as one of my goals for 2019 was to focus more on being present. It’s easy for me to just remain in the past or freak out about the future, toggling between the two. It takes a conscious effort for me to be in the middle, in the present. When change happens, it’s easy to push me onto either side of the present and wallow in what could have been or remain anxious about what could be.
Change allows me to stare this right in the face. Change gives me the opportunity to be present and identify what I’m feeling, and why I’m feeling what I’m feeling and eventually move on. When I’m at full strength, I can go through that process quickly. But where I’m struggling, honest to God, is having strength to move. In seeing there’s a future with happiness, regardless of all the overlapping change, which I think will just always be part of my life.
I’m fighting to be more present in everything. To not live in my head, focusing on the past or the unplanned future. I will not give up the fight, but I also know I can’t do it alone.