FOR THE LOVE OF RELATIONSHIPS – Tunnel of transition

According to Heraclitus, “There is nothing permanent except change.” Change is a universal constant. Everything changes with seasons. Discoveries and advancements create change, families change with weddings, births, and funerals, and people move as their careers change. Change is fundamental, yet we spend a considerable amount of time either avoiding it or stressing about it.  Whether change is good or bad, wanted, or unwanted, planned, or unplanned, it still can be stressful. Life rhythms change and they are hard to re-establish. 

Even though I knew change was going to be a huge part of my life during this season, I still feel emotionally raw. We planned for this time by booking a 73-day Grand Africa Tour Cruise and left on October 10. This was planned years ago for one reason…to leave Denver and allow my daily rhythm to unfold. After founding and working for the Center for Relationship Education (CRE) for 30 years, my car drove to the office practically by itself. Now as the succession planning got implemented and my daughter took over as the President of CRE, I am far from home.  Even though I had several years to prepare for this time, I find myself to be a bundle of churning emotions. I have gathered meditations, affirmations and songs outlining embracing change and a new day. I have gotten up early to experience beautiful sunrises with the hope that by watching the beauty and perpetual cycle of a new day, I would move into this season with grace and poise. As of today, this strategy is not working. My eyes continue to leak, and I am a not at peace. I am sure this state of being is being fueled not only by retirement but also by the sale of a home that was a sanctuary for my spirit for 27 years. We have been living in hotels and a furnished apartment, but these are not the places one can find rest. 

I looked to the experts for advice on how to be resilient and brave during this time. The advice starts with self-care, eating well, resting, exercising, journaling, and meditating. 

One of the strategies is setting small goals that are realistic and achievable. Another is re-establishing a routine. All the articles I read on dealing with change encourages connection with others. 

So, what is the plan for the next 70 days. I plan to work out, sleep well, read books I have never had time to read, speak to cruise passengers and listen to their stories regarding retirement, continue to try to find a home (via the web) to purchase once we return, enroll in a university to get my Masters, work to organize the NARME (National Alliance for Relationship and Marriage Education) Conference in Oklahoma City next June, go on a hunt for goodness in this crazy, depraved world where killing innocent civilians is condoned by some, practice gratitude and have a good cathartic cry.