“Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.”
— Eckhart Tolle
The small fountain in my flower bed sits just outside the window where I work. I noticed the fountain wasn’t flowing, the water was still, and there was a green gunk on the once clear bowl.
I guess when I saw the fountain at the store, I thought I’d pour water in, plug it in, and just enjoy it. It didn’t work quite like that, though, and it has been a reminder that really nothing in life is as plug and go as it might appear.
Relationships at work, at home, with friends, and with extended family all change through the years, and if we don’t want stagnant relationships or stagnant lives, it seems we’re each going to have to do our part to keep things alive and the energy flowing, in our fountains and in our lives.
Change is a tough subject, yet life is full of change. Our interests and our needs might change, but we have to learn how to balance change without throwing relationships out the window.
Changing where we live, our job, the color of our hair are all things that can be invigorating and scary at the same time. A new school? Oh, the possibilities to remake how you present yourself, but also the realization that you won’t know anyone. A new year? Ah, the opportunities to try to do things better, and then the reality that the problems that existed on December 31st will not magically disappear on Jan. 1.
Sometimes, though, change is thrust upon us — people die or just leave us, we lose our job, something of ours is stolen. The world has been so full of change recently that it has left me sometimes feeling unsure of what will be next.
Maybe today you need to hear that what looks negative on the surface might be creating space for something new to emerge.
I bought a new book the other day, and after I brought it home I knew I didn’t want to just put it on the shelf. It needed to be displayed.
When I stack books, I typically put three books together with a picture or other item sitting atop. The stack looked great, but it wasn’t really where I wanted it to be, so I moved it. When I placed it on the table, I had to move the items that had been sitting there and find a new home for them.
By the end of the evening, I had changed the placement of several pieces of furniture, cleaned out a garbage bag full of old papers and felt pleasantly exhausted.
I always laugh that my husband has requested I find another way to deal with my need to move things should he ever lose his sight. It seems that he might even have suggested I get a job where people move furniture all day.
He could be on to something, but for me every time I move the furniture I am creating new space in my home and in my life. Tying to Tolle’s opening quote, what seems negative to my family when I move things almost always results in my finding something they’ve been unable to locate.
Changes in my life have not always been my choice quite the way moving furniture has been.
Amidst the changing and rearranging, my husband is a constant for whom I am so thankful. Relationships can offer safety for facing change and for experimenting, and you don’t have to be married to have someone you can lean on. Knowing someone ‘has my back’ gives me freedom from fear if I’m starting a new job or just a new style.
Change, big or small, is still change and can be scary when we don’t feel supported. If you can’t count on the people you call ‘friends’ to support you, it might be time to consider another change … of the company you keep. Sitting with a lady recently who is in her 90s, the importance of knowing we have supporters to shore us up in times of change became especially clear to me.
I can’t be everyone’s support, and neither can you, but in the sea of life’s changes, we can be at least one person’s support.
Do you welcome change or do you avoid it?
When our boys were little, we had an aquarium that was home to several different animals over the years. When we had frogs, they laid eggs in this weird jelly-like substance. We watched to see what would happen, and pretty soon, little fish-type things were showing up and attaching to the leaves. They were tadpoles, and we watched as they swam around and then noticed they changed, growing little legs. Before we knew it, they each had four legs and their tails disappeared. They were frogs.
The changes were so exciting to watch! It wasn’t a choice they had to become frogs or not. It just happened. As long as we are living, change happens.
It looks like it’s time to clean the scum out of the fountain, so the water will flow like it was designed.
It’s probably a good time to do the same with my relationships. It’s so easy to get busy and put things and people aside, but with the change of the seasons, there is a fresh energy in the air, and I want to have that same freshness in my life.
I can’t just buy the book and never read it, plug in the fountain and never clean it, or have the relationship and never tend it. I am changing and rearranging my furniture and my time so I can enjoy the people who matter most to me.