I have always been afraid of change. I remember the night before the first day of a school year thirteen times over. Huddled under my doona wishing the summer holidays would last forever. Reluctant to even peep my toes out from bed, let alone face the doom of change that waited as a new school year commenced.
Nothing bad ever happened. No friends lost. No schools changed. If anything the change that came with a new school year was barely significant. But the idea of that change was enough to string my anxiety.
I have always been a creature of habit. Habit is good. Habit is safe. Habit is all knowing. Habit always has a happy ending.
As the school years ended and the university years began to write their chapters I noticed that habit was becoming harder to keep hold of. On the grounds of a university, change walked the path not habit. University timetables, university subjects, university friends it seemed that every word penned at university was etched in change.
Nothing bad ever happened. The friends that did not change became lifelong friends. The subjects that did not change became a career. The memories never changed. But here I was now in my mid-twenties still very much afraid of change.
I think the moment I knew something was wrong was on my wedding day. Only moments before I walked out the door at my parents’ house that morning I was paralysed by an anxiety attack. My feet wouldn’t move. My heart raced. At the time I thought it was all the pressure that had built up over two years of wedding planning.
Looking back now I realise I was about to step forward into one of the most significant changes of my life and part of me wanted to stay curled under the doona in bed where I knew it was safe.
Nothing bad ever happened. The wedding was a perfect fairy tale. The marriage is about to tick twelve years. The relationship is about to tick twenty. And in this time I have slowly learnt to make friends with change.
Having my two boys unravelled any lingering fears I had of change. Unravelled them into the long nights spent with a baby crying in my arms. Unravelled them in the moments I lay in bed with my two sons staring at their faces in disbelief that they are mine. Unravelled them into the hard days where patience and strength had run dry.
Change is my strength. Change is my guide. I seek solace in the unexpected and trust my prayers in all that lies in wait. Change works to define us. Change works to encourage us. Change gives voice to our soul.
Nothing bad ever happened. For even in the moments when I thought all had fallen apart. Crumbled and disintegrated into moments of heart breaking despair. Change held the candle in front of me. Hope in the flickering light. Change the happy ending.
What is your relationship with change – do you hold it in fear or in faith?
Conversations over Coffee returns Thursday March 26, 2015.
Conversations with Magic ~ everyone is welcome.
Thank you to Where the Wild Things Were for next month’s prompt.