Adjusting to Change

“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.

image: haiti-connect.org

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.

image: trlawing.com

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.

image: socialimprove.com

image: socialimprove.com

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.

image:custompokertables.com

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.

image:tvtropes.org

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 happens.

It is unavoidable but adaptable.

It is uncontrollable but adjustable.

When life appears to be beating you down,

just change.

How do you adjust to change? Are you more prone to fight it or embrace it?

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About brendamarroy

blogger, and author
This entry was posted in Awareness, Change, Consciousness, Healing, inspirational, Making choices, Mindfulness, spiritual and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Adjusting to Change

  1. pathwriter says:

    Great post, Brenda. I think your word—adjustment—is perfect.

    When young dance students are learning to balance, one of the things that they almost always do is try to completely freeze their position, often to the point of holding their breath—which means I’m constantly telling my students to breathe! 🙂 I also tell them that balancing isn’t a matter of not moving at all, but of making a continuing series of tiny adjustments. So, too, with life…our pattern is to seize up, hold our breath, and resist adjusting—even though doing so would make all those changes so much easier.

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi Viki,
      Thanks for sharing about learning to find balance in dance positions. It seems it doesn’t really matter what the occasion. learning to adjust and adapt is mandatory if we’re going to find our balance. I appreciate your comment.

  2. I remember so clearly feeling that if the world would just hold still for a few minutes/ days/ weeks until I could wrap my brain around all the changes that were happening in my life, then I would be okay. The world, of course, doesn’t hold still. Gradually I realized that mental foot stomping and bratty thinking that the world had to accommodate me for me to play the game was keeping me stuck. Your great post so clearly describes the challenges. Thank you for that and for sharing the beautiful poem. I love your expression “Lean into Life”. Awesome!

    • brendamarroy says:

      Heather, Thank you for your thoughtful commennt. I truly understand mental foot stomping and bratty thinking. I also understand mental masturbation. I don’t play with my mind like I used to because I’m learning to practice mindfulness. Leaning into life is a good habit to cultivate. I appreciate your reading my blog. 🙂

  3. Hermionejh says:

    Change is the only constant in life, so I’ve heard! I’m sorry to read about the passing of your cat. I hope it was a wonderful pet and you have many lovely memories. I have a very difficult time with changing time schedules. I’ve realized that I do not transition well unless I have enough time to process. Excellent post, Brenda!

  4. Excellent post Brenda! This constant state of flux, the flow and ebb of life, nothing remains static, everyone is growing, my responsibilities as a wife and mother expands and take on new forms each day. Thank you for sharing what change looks like in your life and how we can go with the flow more graciously. For me that has been my key lesson – to learn to go with the flow of change. instead of being adamant to constantly swim against the current 😀 Many hugs to you, Sharon

    • brendamarroy says:

      Thank you for reading and leaving a comment,Sharon. Swimming against the current wears a body out. Eventually we get too tired to go on and when that happens we give up and go with the flow. Or we can go with the flow from the beginning and save ourselves all the hard labor of struggle.

  5. Great post, Brenda and great comments above, thanks everyone 🙂 I adjust to change pretty well, I may need a week to process it then I go with the flow but I have struggled over the past three months and can hear Mary Rose because change has been thrust upon me where I was not considered or given a chance to have my say, opinion or opportunity to see if we could tilt, shift, or in fact change.

    But it is what it is and now I must accept that I was not considered and find my way back into the world without the familiarity you speak about Brenda and that can be difficult to let go of.

    Here’s to our next adventure and making those adjustments 🙂 Big love ♥

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi Michele,
      Adjusting to change is hard enough without having to deal with the added feeling of not being considered. I know what that feels like and it can be painful. I’m finding out how comfortable I am with the familiar. You are right though, it is what it is and the choice is always ours whether to let go or to resist. Another thing I’m learning is resistance requires a lot of wasted energy.

      To always remember to choose adjustment sooner instead of later is a worthwhile prayer. We are indeed blessed to be on this magnificent path of unfolding and expansion. Love and hugs to you, my fellow traveler. Brenda

  6. LadyBlueRose's Thoughts Into Words says:

    usually I flow with change adapt…
    this change now, was not mine,
    and I find that I am hurt because I
    wasn’t even considered in the change
    spoke to about it, just asked to be pleased and happy
    because I love….
    I have ups and downs….alot ….one day it will flow again

    this is very good Brenda, but
    then you are a very wise woman….
    Take Care….
    )0(
    maryrose

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi mary rose,
      As I said to Michelle, change is difficult enough without having to deal with the pain of not being considered. I believe it all is part of this glorious path to fullness and wholeness, so what else can we do but surrender to what is. I’m learning to lean into the pain and let it be while remembering who I am.
      Whether you feel it or not you are still in the flow. It’s not like we step out of the river of life and take a break from the path. When we’re going with the flow sometimes we slam into a rock or a boulder, or we get snagged on a tree limb. The flow is not always smooth and peril free. The challenge is to lean into the pain instead of struggling with it or against it.
      I read your poems so I know you are beautiful,full of light and life and are definitely in the flow. Just keep leaning into life. Love and hugs to you. Brenda

  7. terry1954 says:

    i have never done well with change. it takes me time. now i am being forced to accept change, watching my brother slip away from me

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi Terry,
      I’m so sorry to hear that your brother is slipping away. Letting go of loved ones is very difficult. There is no alternative but to let go, because no matter how hard we hang on, we cannot stop the flow of life. I hold you tenderly in my heart, Terry. Love and hugs, Brenda

  8. Jonesingafter40 says:

    I usually embrace change with open arms…. after I’ve had the benefit of hindsight! haha. This speaks so much to what I’ve been through lately. I think I’ve just begun to accept that I am not in control of everything and I can either adjust or go crazy. Going crazy is not an option so I adjust. Thanks for this one! 🙂

    • brendamarroy says:

      Hi Stacey,
      I know you’ve been through a lot because I read your blog. And you’re right about hindsight. It’s always 20-20.:)
      Resisting change really is crazymaking. Good point. Thanks for reading my blog and for commenting. Love and hugs, Brenda

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