We all have so many transitions to navigate during the course of a single day, let alone the changes we must all experience as we live and grow. Some of us move with ease and grace from one transition to another, letting go of what was and embracing what is to come. Some of us fight every change, every letting go and every leap into the unknown until it becomes familiar.
My five year old grandson, Jordan, recently developed a resistance to every transition during his day. When his mother tries to get him ready to come to my house in the mornings so that she can go to work, he is likely to have a tantrum saying that he wants to stay home. When it is time for me to take him to school in the afternoon, he will hide and cry and say he hates school and doesn’t want to go. When it’s time to pick him up from school he will run away from me – sometimes into the parking lot where cars are coming and going – saying he doesn’t want to leave school. And when his mother comes after work to take him home from my house, he will refuse to leave my side. I realize that he has to face a lot of different places each day, but in each place he is loved and cared for and always ends up having a good time, once he relaxes and accepts the transition.
Growth means change, and change involves risk, stepping from the known to the unknown George Shinn
Perhaps for Jordan, each time he leaves whatever safe haven he is in means stepping from the known to the unknown. He must take the leap of faith that Nana’s house will be safe and fun and that school will be safe and fun and that home will be safe and fun, over and over in his young life.
We have all learned not to make a big fuss over it. When he arrives at my house I assess his body language when he first comes in the door. I try to greet him. If he says “No!” and runs to hide, I let him do so and let him come to me. He will eventually come to me and say, “Play with me.” I greet him then and tell him that of course I will play with him after he has had breakfast.
When it is time to go to school and he resists, I tell him, “I know you do not like leaving one place and going to another, but your teacher really likes you and the other children are all looking forward to playing with you. Let’s look on the calendar to see what you will be doing today.” Just acknowledging his fear and his resistance allows him to work through it.
Is it possible to feel safe and scared at the same time? I think so. Perhaps it is the higher self and lower self battling it out. Jordan’s higher self says “You will be safe wherever you are and whoever you are with,” while his lower self says. “I like it fine where I am. I don’t want to go anywhere else, take any risks. Let me stay here where it’s safe and familiar.”
There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. Albert Einstein
Seen in this light, it is miracle that Jordan works through his fear and resistance each and every day and takes the leap into the relative unknown of my house, of school and of home again. I must appreciate more just how brave this little boy is as he steps each day into the unknown and lives to tell the tale.
I, too, am facing a transition in my life. I must choose whether to continue on with Babynut, or to let it go and wait to see what comes into my life next. This is not an easy transition for me, but one that I must make soon nevertheless.
Who is it that can make muddy water clear? No one. But left to stand, it will gradually clear of itself. Lao Tzu
I am waiting for the water to clear and for my way to become known. I have enjoyed every step of the journey that is Womb To Grow and Babynut. It has been a labor of love for me. Still, I also need it to stand on its own and grow and flourish. Since it has not become profitable in almost 5 years of operation, I must make the choice to let it go or continue to try to make it work on more than just a personal level. Whatever I choose will be one more transition in my life, one more chance for growth and understanding.
I have reached a point in my life where I understand the pain and the challenges; and my attitude is one of standing up with open arms to meet them all. Myrlie Evers