Written by: Abby Custer
Change. There have been countless songs written about this topic, including one of my favorites, Landslide by Fleetwood Mac –
“Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?
Well, I’ve been afraid of changing
‘Cause I build my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Even children get old
And I’m getting older too”
If you are a parent of a school aged child, you are most likely experiencing a season of change in your life right now. Summer is winding down, and it’s time to get into a new routine. This can often feel overwhelming at first – the breakfast rush, homework, dinner, bedtime, do it all again tomorrow. But research shows that kids thrive on routine. And as much as I love the free and open schedule that summer allows, I’m usually ready for the change when school rolls around again. Yet I still find myself desperately clinging to those last few days before we are back at it, and maybe that’s because deep down, we know that it’s not just a change of routine, it’s letting go for another year. It’s the unknown of what this change will bring that is often the hardest part.
Maybe your little one isn’t in school yet, but you are experiencing a season of change for a different reason. Perhaps it’s a new job or relationship or move. For some people, these changes bring about
excitement and joy. For others, it can open up a deep well of anxious thoughts…What if my child doesn’t like daycare? What if I regret this job change and my family suffers? What if I allow someone new into my life and I’m left hurt in the end? There are so many “what ifs” in this life. It’s okay to feel overwhelmed and scared by this reality. Because the truth is that the choices we make and the changes that take place along our journey do shape both us as individuals and our families. But remember that just because you make a change, it doesn’t mean that specific choice or change has to be permanent if it isn’t working for you or your family.
We aren’t the only ones who go through seasons of change. Just think about how much a baby changes in the first year of their life. My nine month old is on the verge of crawling. This new revelation leaves me feeling both excited about how much he is learning and discovering, and also a bit sad that the newborn phase is behind us. Change makes us feel a variety of emotions, and that’s okay. We can sometimes find ourselves in the middle, looking back and longing for what is past, and looking forward, excited about what’s to come. Consider the transformation of a caterpillar to a butterfly.
Sometimes change is hard, but it often leaves us with something more beautiful than we ever could have imagined.
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Ecc. 3:1