November 3 and changes are a-coming

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If you follow me on social media, you may notice a theme in my posts lately. Besides the fact that I am all about the Holiday Season being upon us now and I am all psyched for that, you are seeing a lot of posts (and reposting of other’s posts) about change.

Maybe you are like me and are not a huge fan of change. Maybe, like me, you avoid it at all costs. Why do we feel that way about change? Is it because change can equal unknown? Or maybe change means we might fail? Let’s be honest. We are all going to fail at some point. And when we do, we pick ourselves back up and either change course or try again. One of my fave people I follow, Rachel Hollis, talks about this a lot. She recently stated it’s not the actual failure we fear, it is the people watching us fail and their opinions of us that makes us not want to change and possibly fail. And something she said recently, and in her book, Girl, Wash Your Face, is that other people’s opinions of me are none of my business. Mind. Blown. I have always been a people pleaser; always concerned about other people’s opinion of me and pretty much only that. The last year and a half or so, God has totally turned me upside down and shaken that out of me.

Oh, it didn’t start out that way. I fought and resisted the change. Not because I was worried about failure, but because I knew how it was going to end. And it has been even worse than I could ever possibly imagine. But that doesn’t mean that the changes didn’t happen for a reason that God wanted to use. To the contrary, it has played out exactly for that reason. I mean, come to find out on the other side of it. But getting to this point of realization has been hard and has involved a lot of shocking behavior by people I thought I knew so well. I had to let go of all of it. Their actions and lack of action; hurtful words and incorrect accusations (notice I didn’t say “unfair accusations?” In case you haven’t noticed, life ain’t fair and no one ever said it would be, although some folks think it should be. It’s not.) Turns out, it has been the best thing for me and for my family. The resulting snowball effect of change has been so incredible, I can barely catch my breath and keep up with it.

I’m learning to not just embrace the change but to hold onto it and run with it. Lots of good things coming in 2019 and it all started with this one change.

Got some scary changes happening? I challenge you to hang on and see it through.

See you tomorrow.

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You Asked for it…Part 1.

Welcome to my You Asked for it Series. Today’s post is the first in this series. Future ramblings will possibly include: Surviving Your Child’s Senior Year or as I like to call it: The Year I Consumed Mass Quantities of Black Dog and Cried…a lot.

Okay, so maybe not, but today, whilst I enjoy my morning sitting in my second favorite place in the world, The Back Porch, I’m going to reflect on the following post idea suggested by my friend and neighbor, Mrs. D:

If I could change one thing in my life, what would it be? 

My vain and flippant side immediately reached straight for the impossible to attain: my current age. I quickly tossed that aside, however. Not because it is unattainable. Because I actually don’t mind my current age of 45 53. It is true, however, that I am definitely not happy with the current state of my health, weight and stress level at this ripe age of 53. And while that is definitely something I want to change, and I am in the process of changing, that still is not the topic of today’s post. Buckle up. It’s going to get bumpy.

Regret. Not for things I did do. For things I didn’t do and should have, could have done. With each thing I regret not doing, it all came back to one thing: fear. I was, and still am, a big sissy when it comes to new things; to stepping out of my comfort zone. And, trust me on this, my comfort zone is the size of a postage stamp…anything outside of that…forget about it.

There have been periods of my life where I allowed…yes, I…allowed the fear to Consume. Me. Going off to a huge university (pre-med at the University of South Florida) after spending the previous two years in a very tiny DoD school overseas, I was completely overwhelmed by fear. So much so that most days I struggled to leave my dorm room. Obviously, I didn’t last long there. But worse than that, I had no idea what was wrong with me. And clearly, I thought, something was seriously wrong with me, which only compounded the problem. I didn’t know who to talk to about it…couldn’t talk to anyone about it. I mean, it was so obvious to me that I was mentally unsound…no one else I knew vomited at just the thought of trying to make her way across a campus of 23,000 students to sit in a classroom of 600 to listen to a lecture. No one else I knew never went to a single lab class because they got lost finding it the first day of classes and were too afraid to ask anyone for help.

Since then, I have missed out on so many jobs, trips, and even relationships, due to that one thing I wish I could change. Because I still struggle with it. I still fear new situations, meeting new people, and even hanging with people I do know. For example, I went to a neighborhood end of summer party last night. I felt the old familiar apprehension creeping in all day and I chose to ignore it. Periodically throughout the evening I could feel it rise up and I would push it back down again. I caught up with ladies I’ve known for 20 years, but haven’t spent much time with, face to face. I truly enjoyed myself and am so happy I went. Was I completely comfortable while I was there? Nope. Not in the least. But, I did it.

Reading back over this, it all seems so silly…this fear thing. The worst part is that it is so stinking real. Some days I feel like it is an old friend that, initially, wraps comfort around me to warm me and keep me safe, before quickly tightening to strangle me and cut me off from life.

Today, I am choosing to fight back. And, as Mrs. D. admonished me a few days ago: to live…abundantly.

Keep those suggestions coming cuz this one was so very easy to write about…not…

And, oh yes, you can bet it took me quite a long while to get past my fear and push the publish button on this one.