“Change is inevitable. Growth is intentional.” Colin Wilson
Since November, 2011 my life has been in a state of flux. I feel like I’ve been up and down, in and out, and round and round. Recently I took a step back and looked at the big picture of what has happened in the past six months. Besides the family trauma I experienced, and the death of my 16-year-old cat, the constant shift in mine and my husbands’ daily life has been huge. Every time we were settling in, the earth shifted and we had to change our life again.
While taking stock of all the changes the word adjustment kept coming to me. To adjust means to change so to fit, to settle rightly, to adapt oneself, or to tilt. “Ahhhhh,” I said to myself. “That’s what we’ve done.” Without thinking about it, my husband and I have learned to adjust to whatever curve or straight ball life has thrown in our direction.
For the first five and a half years of our relationship we lived on a 9:00AM-6:00PM schedule. These were Paul’s hours at work five-six days a week. I had a daily routine. I started my day with ritual, followed by taking a walk, writing, breakfast around 10:30, more writing, and stopping around 3:30-4:00 to prepare dinner. We ate beween 6:30-6:45, cleaned the kitchen then spent our evening with each other. This was my life and it was constant and familiar.
In november, 2011 Paul lost his job. He was unemployed for five weeks and I adjusted to his being home every day. I changed my schedule and all was well
He got a job in December and his new work hours were 6:45AM-3:15PM, five days a week. I made minor adjustments again so I could have dinner ready between 4:00-4:15 every day. In January they changed his schedule to 5:45 AM to 2:15PM, and in March to 2:15PM-10:45PM. That changed everything because he left for work at around 1:15.
I’m a morning person and am at my creative best from 8:00-3:30 or so. Now I had to stop my writing at 11:00 every day so I could prepare our main meal of the day which we ate around 12:30. When he left for work at 1:15 I’d go back to my office and start writing again. I found myself struggling to sit at my desk until 6:00 or 7:00 so I could finish my work because for years my usual stopping time has been 3:30 or 4:00.
I put my heart into it and made the adjustment. Then, on April 27 the company had a layoff. Due to lack of work they let go of the last three men hired. Paul was one of them. He was home again for four days and then he started another new job. Now he works 11:00 PM-7:30 in the morning. We’re still changing and adapting so we can make this schedule work for both of us.
In retrospect I can see how no matter what was happening or what seemed to be falling apart or coming together, we were able to adapt to each change. There have been some dark moments but for the most part we’ve maintained our trust in each other, our humor, and our sense of knowing no matter what shift changes are happening on his job, or in and around us, we are okay and we’ll make it through as long as we keep adjusting.
Change is not always easy and in hindsight I see what a big part adjustment plays in the process. When we can adapt to whatever is, perhaps tilt in one direction or the other, it makes change easier to go through.
Sometimes change is about dying to one way of life and morphing into something new. At times it’s scary because it may represent the unknown. I don’t mind change when it involves moving away from something I don’t like or that is not working. It’s hard though when it involves moving from something familiar and comfortable. Sometimes I want to cling to the comfort even though I know on a deeper level I need to make a change.
It is easy to get stuck in what we know.There have been many occasions in life where I’ve known it was time to leave something or someone, but I stayed stuck like I was glued to the person or experience. I’m sometimes afraid to move up, move on, move over, or move forward. I often like the comfortable feeling of familiarity.
We are now in another state of flux and trying to figure how to adjust to these new work hours. Right now life seems upside down and in a way it is. I realized this morning that instead of being grateful he has a job, we’ve complained about his new work hours. Spirit is reminding me to let the complaining go and embrace the opportunity to make another adjustment in life.
Change by K. Hillery
What is change?
Is it temporary or permanent?
Is it conditional or non-conditional?
Is it a passing mood?
Change happens at the spur of the moment.
It happens at the drop of a coin.
It is instantaneous and spontaneous.
For better or for worse,
It is unavoidable but adaptable.
It is uncontrollable but adjustable.
When life appears to be beating you down,
- To read more of K. Hillery’s work see: www.khilleryspoems.wordpress.com
How do you adjust to change? Are you more prone to fight it or embrace it?