Turn and face the strange
I grew up in a very small town. Population 2800. Everyone is connected in one way or another. My mother was my 5th grade teacher for goodness sakes (and before you ask, she gave me a “C”).
From the time I was 2 years old I had a core group of friends that I hung out with. Our parents were friends, we attended elementary school together (my mom was their teacher, too), our families vacationed together, we went to the same high school, and we even worked at the same restaurant during college breaks.
I decided to move across the country a year after I graduated college. I knew one person, I didn’t have a place to live, I had no job, I was chasing a dream that my parents were wonderful enough to encourage. It was all very scary and exhilarating at the same time.
I remember the week before I moved I was hanging out with my friends sharing how afraid I was to leave and start this whole new life. I explained that I didn’t want to miss anything. I wanted to still be a part of everything. One of my friends looked at me and smiled saying, “Don’t worry nothing ever changes around here. Everything will still be the same when you come back to visit.” I took comfort in her words. It made it easier for me to leave. I don’t know if that was her intention or if she even knew her words eased my worry. But she was wrong.
Over the years so many things have changed: there have been marriages, births, deaths, new jobs, many gains, and many losses.
I have heard a million times that things don’t change. Here is what I have found. Everything changes. Everyone changes. The real victory is how we handle that change. Will you kick and scream and pound your fists? I’ve done that. Will we smile and face it gracefully? I’ve done that (much less than the kicking and screaming).
When I do go home to visit, it’s a bittersweet reminder that life is series of changes. They need to happen in order to have any sort of movement or growth. We change our clothes every day, seasons change, we change channels to find something more entertaining or thought provoking on TV.
Here’s the beauty in life. We get to choose how we turn and face the new, the different and.the strange. What choice will you make?
“People don’t fear change, they fear the idea of loss.”Melanie