A few introductions to this particular blog.
First, I have this thing I do when I’m REALLY anxious. I call it the Strikethrough Exercise. When all of the thoughts are swirling…the worries…the negativity…and I feel like I can’t control them…I write them down…one by one…and then…one by one…I cross through each thought and write next to it either THE TRUTH (because anxiety lies) or a positive spin or silver lining to the situation. This exercise forces me to take each thought that’s swirling…separate it…address it…and find a way to show myself that it’s not something I can’t handle. It may sound weird, but it really works for me. One of these lists is what inspired this blog.
Second, every now and then, I come up with a little phrase in my mind (or out loud) that I’m particularly proud of and decide I’m a genius. (The best example of these moments is when I spontaneously told my ex boyfriend, “I don’t hate you. Your face just gives me Tourettes.” That’s a story for another time, but… *proud head nod and smile*…I’m still damn proud of that one.) Today’s random phrase that inspired the title of this blog…
“All of Life’s Wealth is CHANGE”.
So, what does that mean? Think about it in a monetary sense. At the base root of every amount of wealth is dollars. At the base root of every dollar is change. Small change (pennies) and incrementally bigger change…without it, we wouldn’t have wealth.
Life is the same. Without change we can’t have the full level of wealth that our lives are capable of. The friendships. The love. The adventure. The happiness. They all start somewhere. They start with change. Maybe it’s in pennies sometimes (we meet someone new or have a new opportunity) or maybe it feels like we’re sitting under a slot machine that just hit jackpot (an unexpected divorce or change in job). Without every bit of change that we accumulate, we wouldn’t end up with the wealth that we can have.
And yet…most of us…(maybe myself more than most)…Lord, do we fight change.
That’s where I’ve been at. At the root of all of my anxiety is the fact that everything is changing.
I felt at the top of my world back around the beginning of October. Things were going great. I had stresses…and a slightly dented heart due to my own stupidity lol…but, life was good. I had a career that was growing…I had grades I was proud of…I had this group of friends that I thought nothing could EVER change…I had found my place with a group of ladies who love fitness as much as I do and I felt like I was accepted and a part of something bigger…I was in the best shape of my life doing things the doctors said were impossible and proving to myself and the world what I was capable of.
Slowly, at first, and then more dramatically…that changed. Something happened at work that didn’t change my career, but drastically changed the environment of my career. Graduation suddenly loomed and I realized that I was going to have a giant hole there in my life that I don’t know yet how I will fill. I broke my leg and wasn’t able to work out. I holed up because I no longer felt like a part of the group. I no longer felt needed and wanted because I couldn’t do the things they could do. New people came into my group of friends…amazing and wonderful new people who add to everyone’s lives…but new people that were there when I couldn’t be. I watched the bonds form and the dynamics change (as they do)…all from the outside. I felt helpless and alone. But then I thought I had a chance to get back…and then the heart stuff happened. It’s not the end of the world, it won’t kill me (unless I keep being a dumbass and do something dumb like passing out in front of a moving vehicle). But it sure changes everything. There are things I can’t do now. There are things I shouldn’t do now. Some of these are things I did with my friends…things that now they can continue doing…within those newly formed bonds…
Suffice it to say…I spend a lot of time feeling like I’m under that slot machine and change is falling all over me. I have had no control over it falling…I don’t know when it will stop falling…and, I swear to God, if one more quarter lands in my eye I’m going to start throwing them at people! lol
So, that was the first thing on my list. But I struck through it…as my brain was forced to see the other side of that anxiety.
Everything is changing. Maybe…it’s supposed to.
That second thought was immediate as I wrote down the first. One of those moments where I know that God is speaking to me because I’m FINALLY in a state where I’m ready to listen.
Maybe everything is SUPPOSED to change.
Why? Well…let’s look at the other side of these quarters.
The situation in my career caused me to stand up for myself in ways that I didn’t know I was capable of. It forced me to look at my career…admit to myself what I was capable of…and decide what I was and was not willing to stand for on the path of my career. This change made me grow in a way that I had not yet grown in my 40+ years of life.
The looming graduation and the fear of that “free time”…OK. This quarter is a little tougher because I’m not there yet, but it HAS pushed me to revisit other hobbies that I love and that bring me peace. I’m hopeful that I will continue to see that I am more than a student…and I’m embracing the fact that this will give me the chance to see if my years of “finding my confidence through academics” worked and if I really have grown in my ability to love and accept myself.
The feeling that I’ve lost my place and purpose in the fitness group…pushed me to accept when they offered me an opportunity to lead through teaching (I would have been terrified of that before). It showed me who really does care for me and not just for my abilities. It showed me that some people really do love ME and support me always. It also showed me that some people are only meant to be in the fitness side of my life. And. That. Is. Ok. It showed me that my place in this group isn’t just about fitness…in a very strange sense, at the same time as it was showing me where I don’t currently belong, it was showing me where I belong more than I ever imagined I could.
The new people…that’s a given. New friends are a great thing. As introverted and shy as I am, even I know that the best parts of my life are the people in it. I have more of those people now. And the changing dynamics…Honestly, I continue to struggle with this one. BUT this change has also further cemented some of those friendships (and they were already pretty dang rock solid cement). And even those that may have diminished very slightly…it showed me that they are still solid and those friends genuinely do love me even if sometimes our paths go in slightly different ways.
The heart…is forcing me to slow down. That is a very difficult thing for me to do, but it’s been necessary for a very long time. Everyone likes to tease me that I go 90 miles an hour or I’m the Energizer Bunny. I fill my time so that I’m moving nonstop. Sometimes out of necessity…sometimes out of fear. If I’m always moving, I’ll always have purpose…and I won’t have too much time to think. By being forced to slow down, I’m being forced to face that fear. Turns out life continues when I slow down. I still have purpose. I still have normal moments of both happiness and sadness…joy and strife. I just have it all with a little less exhaustion.
So…ALLLLLLLLLLLL of this change…flooding down on my head and smacking me in the face…is accumulating…
It’s accumulating into the life I’m supposed to have and have always wanted.
A life full of relationships and fun…career success and adventure…interests, hobbies, friendships and joy.
And I can’t get to that full extent of wealth without the change that is supposed to happen.
So, today I go forth. I stop trying to get rid of pennies and nickles just because they seem like useless change that is only going to weigh me down. I let the change accumulate and…
I patiently wait for the accumulation of change to turn into the fortune that God has planned for me.
And in my moments of fear and doubt, I will look towards that plan and pray a special prayer that I wrote for moments like these.
“Dear Lord, please allow me to hear your voice louder than the voice of my hopes, and allow me to hear the voice of my hopes louder than the voice of my fears.”
One thought on “All of Life’s Wealth is CHANGE”
I so very much love that prayer. For the longest time I only prayed (vaguely) for the strength to accept God’s plan for me. I have to “borrow” yours and say it for both of us.
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