The last year has really caused me to stop and think about change.
- How do I adjust to change?
- How do other women adjust to it?
- Am I open to accepting change?
- What changes have been the hardest to accept; the easiest?
Here’s how I handle change:
History proves Zack and I are very open to change. And we’ve certainly had a lot of change throughout our marriage: three major job losses and moving three different times across the country (Minneapolis, California, then back to Michigan). We have started multiple businesses; traveled to Tanzania, Africa; I birthed four children in five years. We have figured out our preferred decor style (lots of light! lots of plants!), paid off over $65,000 of debt, and minimized our possessions so we aren’t a slave to them.
All of this has required change, yes — but more than that, it’s required a sense of openness.
But, it hasn’t always been this way. I’ve noticed the closer I am to Jesus the more easily I accept change.
Even with our faith, if we want to grow in it, accepting change makes our lives more beautiful. This isn’t to say change isn’t painful sometimes, or difficult to understand, or confusing, or slow. But what if change could help you experience more freedom, more laughter, and the path to everlasting life?
So this is what we’ve personally concluded: if we’re not interested in change, all growth comes to a halt.
Now, where does motherhood fit into this discussion? Change is certainly not easy to accept, especially when you’re caring for indecisive small children, aren’t getting enough sleep at night, or are processing difficult things.
I asked a few mothers on Instagram for their feedback.
Here’s what they had to say about accepting change…
MIRANDA: I don’t handle change well. So when change does inevitably occur, I focus on what is in my control. For example, I can’t control if my husband loses his job, but I can control how I react, how I cultivate peace in the household during an unpredictable time, etc.
MARLEN: Change scares me. I try to avoid it as much as possible. But, even with that being said the big changes that I have experienced have been the scariest, most amazing times in my life! I try to embrace change more now knowing it’s inevitable but I still have moments (sometimes days) of anxiety that I remind myself that change can be wonderful.
HANNAH: Change is exciting to me – it feels like “possibility.” I like variety and change brings new things! When things are the same, all the time, then I can be more prone to struggle. Even hard changes bring opportunities for new beginnings. For example, losing a job or coming to the end of a relationship may not be easy or what we would choose for ourselves, but they make space for something new.
SARAH: I don’t do change well and I have found that when change happens in my life, I need a few moments to stop and silence everything – pray about it (sometimes cry about it!) – and mentally walk through it.
JOANNA: I like to say that change is an opportunity for character development. I handle change with open arms and try to see each new experience as a gift (versus a loss) because without change there is no growth.
MOLLY: Change isn’t usually in my top ten things. My goals in motherhood and life are typically centered around consistency. I like to think of myself as flexible but often find that I become frustrated and anxious when things need to change. However, I have come to treasure a verse that I daily put before my eyes. Proverbs 16:9 says, “a man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” He knows all things and knows what is best. I can rest in Him directing my steps as He sees my heart plans. When an attitude needs a change, when my routine empties me of every last ounce of energy, I cling to His promise to direct my steps. When my family keeps growing and changing, I remember that He is kind to listen and faithful to provide energy, patience, creativity, and rest.
What is your perspective of “change”?
If you’re able, I’d love to hear some of your stories of how you handle change (or how you handled it, if you experienced change recently). What truths do you cling to for support? Do you agree with Joanna’s comment above, “…because without change there is no growth”? Why or why not?
PS. I finished my second graduate class with Moody Chicago tonight (Old Testament History, Literature, and Theology)! My final paper has been submitted, and I’ve got exactly 7 days “off” until my next class begins :) How many “for fun” books do you think I’ll read with all my freetime?